The Mosaic Company and CHS Ag Services
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The Mosaic Company and CHS Ag Services

 
August 10, 2009   |   ShareThis

As growers know all too well, crop production technology changes rapidly, and it takes effort to stay up-to-date with the most current developments in the industry. Almost 400 growers from the Red River Valley had the opportunity to see some of the latest technologies when CHS Ag Services hosted a plot tour near Drayton, N.D. CHS, The Mosaic Company and several major seed companies showcased the latest in crop nutrition and genetics at the event.

Growers toured corn, soybean and sunflower test plots where they participated in discussions with CHS agronomists and representatives, as well as Dan Froehlich, director of agronomy at The Mosaic Company, who talked about the importance of plant nutrients spread consistently across a field.

Froehlich explained a plot comparing a traditional fertilizer blend and the new phosphate fertilizer technology, MicroEssentials®. Fertilizer was dyed to represent the different components of a traditional blend and was spread over the soil, where growers could see the component segregation easily. MicroEssentials, which contains three or four nutrients in a single granule, was also dyed and spread over soil. Growers were able to see firsthand the advantage plants receive from this new fertilizer. Because all nutrients are in one granule, there is no component segregation and plant root systems are not forced to go in search of necessary nutrients across a large area.

"When we illustrate fertilizer application this way, it becomes obvious that traditional blends often do not distribute nutrients evenly, and do not put them within reach of growing crops" Froehlich told the group. "We designed MicroEssentials as an answer to this need."

Froehlich went on to discuss the need for key nutrient interaction in the soil, and the benefits of sulfur availability to young, growing plants. In the presence of sulfur, phosphate uptake increases, and in high pH soil, sulfur is a particular need. The pH of each MicroEssentials granule balances the surrounding soil pH to enhance P availability. In the Red River Valley, where soil is often high in pH, MicroEssentials is a powerful tool in any grower’s arsenal. When sulfur is applied as minor components of a bulk blend, much of the benefit is lost because plants must seek out the sparse granules across a large area.

Froehlich explained that there are two forms of sulfur in each MicroEssentials granule, making sulfur available all season long. Sulfate is available to plants immediately, and elemental sulfur provides a sulfur source later in the growing season.

"Our goal with MicroEssentials is to offer a phosphate fertilizer that provides plants with the nutrients needed to maximize genetic potential. This helps growers maximize their investments in plant genetics," said Froehlich.

For more information about the new phosphate fertilizer, MicroEssentials, visit www.microessentials.com, or contact your local Mosaic Company representative.