Fall application increases risk of nitrogen loss for corn

COLUMBIA, Mo. – High nitrogen prices and concerns about fertilizer supplies have disrupted nitrogen management for the 2022 growing season.“For corn, there were many reports of anhydrous ammonia being applied earlier than normal and that more nitrogen was applied in the fall than normal,” said John Lory, University of Missouri Extension nutrient management specialist. “Nitrogen applied in November waits in the soil over six months…

With high fertilizer prices, are you better off buying fertilizer or supplemental hay?

COLUMBIA, Mo. – Increases in fertilizer prices add to the cost of growing forage for grazing. This leads farmers to ask if they should buy hay or fertilizer, says University of Missouri Extension nutrient management specialist John Lory.Comparing the benefits of buying hay vs. applying fertilizer for better yields is complicated, but it is crucial to the bottom line, says Lory.

MU Extension agronomist offers tips to offset high nitrogen prices

GALENA, Mo. – If there was ever a time to do a soil test, this is it, says University of Missouri Extension agronomist Tim Schnakenberg. Rising fertilizer prices make it too expensive to guess on how to apply nutrients, says Schnakenberg.Soil tests can prevent buying and applying fertilizer where not needed. See the MU Extension publication “Soil Sampling Hayfields and Row Crops” at extension.missouri.edu/g9217.

Managing potassium and phosphorus when prices are high

COLUMBIA, Mo. – Farmers understand fertilizer prices fluctuate with time. “We are living through a substantial shift in potassium and phosphorus prices, from low prices in the 2020 growing season to the highest prices in the past decade for fertilizer purchased now for the 2022 growing season,” says John Lory, University of Missouri Extension nutrient management specialist.

Soils, cropping systems specialist joins MU Delta Research Center

PORTAGEVILLE, Mo. – Justin S. Calhoun starts Sept. 1 as a University of Missouri Extension state specialist in soils and cropping systems. He will be based at the Fisher Delta Research Center (FDRC) in southeastern Missouri near Portageville. Calhoun will also be an assistant professor in the MU Division of Plant Science and Technology.

Potash pays off

NEVADA, Mo. – Potash prices have risen about 75% in the past year, according to USDA Agricultural Marketing Service data. This has prompted many producers to cut back on applications. But that could be a mistake. Potash is essential to healthy fields and pastures, says University of Missouri Extension agronomy specialist Pat Miller.It is important to apply potash to replenish depleted nutrients. “Potash-deficient fields are not going…

Up to test – what does that mean?

NEVADA, Mo. – “I brought it up to test.” University of Missouri Extension agronomist Pat Miller often hears that when farmers talk about crop fertilizer applications.“I do not think it means what you think it means,” Miller says, quoting the movie “The Princess Bride.”According to Miller, people who say that usually mean that they made a one-time fertilizer application recommended by a soil test.

Frost seeding improves yield, quality

COLUMBIA, Mo. – Forage yield and quality improve when legumes are frost-seeded at the right time, says University of Missouri Extension state forage specialist Craig Roberts. Frost seeding, a method of broadcasting seeds over snow- or frost-covered pastures, improves poor pastures at a low cost. Seeds work their way into the soil and germinate as the ground freezes and thaws between winter and spring.

Never say never to nitrogen

COLUMBIA, Mo. – Sometimes it pays to be late.Nitrogen application is one of those times, says University of Missouri Extension nutrient management specialist Peter Scharf.Scharf, who has researched nitrogen application in corn, wheat and other crops for 35 years, continues to favor spring nitrogen application over fall-applied application, especially during wet years, which are becoming more frequent.

Be smart about fall N

It's October 26 and there is snow falling outside my window in Columbia. The precip over the past week may have slowed down fall field operations a little, but we're at or ahead of average on corn and soybean harvest according to USDA—unlike the past two years. This probably carries over to other field operations as well.I hope that none of you have applied anhydrous yet for next year's corn. In my opinion, October is too risky—even if…

Does wheat need N in fall?

Yes, of course wheat needs N in fall. Timely planting and decent fall tillering are very important to wheat yield potential. And adequate N supports that tillering.But soil has N, regardless of whether you put any there. Is it enough, or not enough, to maximize wheat yield potential?

Time to spread fertilizer evenly

As I write this on October 6, USDA estimates that 80% of Missouri corn and more than 75% of Missouri soybeans are in excellent or good condition. This is the best in the past 5 years for both crops.Harvest is well under way and I hope that most of you are pulling in the good yields that USDA predicted.

In-season nitrogen application boosts profits

COLUMBIA, Mo. – Use of in-season nitrogen on corn has increased in Missouri and surrounding states over the past 10 years. What used to be rare is now common. Some of these applications are planned, but others are to give corn yields a boost when wet weather causes nitrogen loss.

Wheat and N: What to do?

It's been another tough year for wheat so far.

Farmers can connect to MU Extension specialists weekly in public town hall meeting format

The need to abide by spring's timetable and produce food for the table doesn't wait for crisis to pass. Continued field crop, forage, and animal production are essential not only for the nutrients they provide, but also for the economic, mental and spiritual health they return to us and our communities.

Strategies for nitrogen on wheat this spring

It was a difficult fall in Missouri and much of the Midwest. Crops came out late, crops came out wet, fields were rutted, wheat got planted late or not at all, and once the wheat was up it found itself in a hostile (cold & wet) environment.

Nitrogen: Flex and go fast

It's April 4 and raining again in central Missouri. A lot of work planned for fall did not get done. Opportunities to catch up in late winter or early spring have been nil. I expect a spring where the value of good decisions will be magnified.

What about nitrogen for a corn crop? Still there?

download this article It’s been wet over the whole state of Missouri. Since October, really, but especially in May.

Crop sensors improve nitrogen application

COLUMBIA, Mo. – Sensor-guided nitrogen application can save corn producers money and increase yields, says Peter Scharf, University of Missouri Extension soil scientist.Scharf showed how crop sensors diagnose variable nitrogen needs at a recent farmer technology field day at MU’s Bradford Research Center. In the last decade, on-farm demonstrations have been carried out in more than 100 cornfields and a dozen cotton fields in Missouri.

Cover crop residue can complicate nitrogen management in corn

COLUMBIA, Mo. – Farmers who rely on surface-applied nitrogen may have difficulty if they apply to fields with high surface residue, says University of Missouri Extension nutrient management specialist John Lory.This is especially true for UAN solution, Lory says. Residue can temporarily tie up nitrogen fertilizer because it is taken up by microorganisms decomposing the residue.“This is particularly a problem with liquid nitrogen…