Phosphate efficiency may limit yields in small grains.

Return Home

Phosphate efficiency may limit yields in small grains.
 
Dark Northern Spring Wheat consumes twice as much placed P as winter wheat per bushel produced. DNSW is also the highest user of placed P compared to all other cereal grains.
 
Calcareous soils sequester placed P and therefore a technique long practiced with Yielder Drills, (NP equipped and so designated), can be used with single disc drills from Case and Deere.  The technique is used with high yielding 140 bushel per acre DNSW under irrigation to raise the overall P uptake and drive the plant to faster growth and maturity in cooler soils.  Placed P turns up the thermostat about 10 degrees with this technique. In otherwords the plant propagates at lower temperatures most effectively.
 

Why is placed P so critical to spring wheat?
 
Montana research by Dr. Roger Wilson (retired)  indicates that 70% of the placed P must be in the plant root system in first 30 days. After 30 days nitrogen uptake becomes critical. Wheat pulls tremendous amounts of N right up to antithesis and stores the N in the plant stems and flag leaf.  The crown roots branch and explore the top 18 inches where 80% of the nutrients are located. Seminal roots reach for moisture to about 3 to 3.5 feet.
 
TAPPS allows P to be 40% more effective than dry phosphate application in the seed row since the crystal formulation avoids the calcium tie up....plus TAPPS can be positionally located in relation to radicle and seminal root hairs for maximum geometric uptake early....in fact right at plant emergence.  The technique does not apply with the almost impossible task of using dry fertilizers.  P is so much more efficient that a reduction in placed P can occur if TAPPS is formulated.
 
Spring wheat root systems are not extensive like winter wheat or corn.  Therefore spring wheat must absorb more placed P to raise higher protein and yield. Dry formulations of P have sinusoidal delivery and require higher rates of P to be applied.  This is one reason why dry phosphate fertilizer is seldom used on corn planters....poor flow and delivery and damaged corn from sinusoidal flow or steady by jerks application.
 
Remember 70% of the root mass is in the top 18 inches of soil...this is why side dressing works so well...the nutrients are not below the root mass. The nutrients are in the root mass area.
 
DNSW makes yield first and protein second.  Developing strong and thick walled, plant stems using ammonic nitrogen and implementing an absorptive root system with formulated TAPPS requires high placed P efficiency.
 
Timing of TAPPS with side dress application of nutrients at 30 to 50 day period drives placed and soil stored nutrient efficiency higher....so a split application of nutrients using the single disc seeder as side dress applicator moves the plant efficiency along more rapidly and allows the plants secondary root system to absorb more nutrients and to store more nitrogen in the plant stem.  DNSW is like corn...it stores nitrogen in the plant stem and flag leaf allowing the seed berry to develop high protein...
 
The longer the nutrients are in the ground....the greater the risk becomes...This makes single disc seeders powerful tools in managing nutrients with Exactrix TAPPS application.  You may have top dressed spring wheat to take higher protein using expensive 32 and 28...now you can side dress spring wheat between 30 and 60 days after seeding and use much less N, P and S placed.
 
Protein values and  can reach lofty marks of 15% and 16% using ATS with APP and NH3 with the techniques of Cross Row Feeding and Side Dress. Falling numbers can be found in the 300 to 400 range.  All nutrients placed timely at seeding and again at side dress time.
 
Isn't Sulfur important in protein wheats?  What about pH and Cooper?
 
Yes, Protein wheats require about twice as much S and pushing protein higher requires about 10 to 15 pounds of N and about 5 pounds of S for each 1% of protein above 12% in the 50 bushel range. Your soil test may indicate differently but this is good place to start.  
 
With Exactrix techniques and 100 bushel DNSW you will need to budget about 30 pounds of additional N and 10 to 15 pounds of additional S in the form of Thio-Sul to raise the protein from 12% to 14%...After 14% to 16% you can expect to use 15 pounds of N and 7 pounds of S to raise an additional 1% protein per 100 bushels produced. Side dressing must be considered. An algorithm should be developed with a $1,000 payment from Exactrix for test plots to confirm values.  
 
The critical point is Exactrix N, P, and S as TAPPS must be used...the application rates will not work with other nutrient strategies.  Remember protein wheats make yield first and protein second.  Using less N and S is achieved with Cross Row Feeding as compared to other nutrient application strategies.
 
You will also need to use copper if you have a peat type soil....If the soil pH is above 7 or much below 6, TAPPS must be formulated....There may be some advantage in liming your low pH soils....If you have a pH of 5.5 or less it will take about 23% more nutrients compared to a 7 pH soil. 
 
Calcium and Aluminum are the bad players in variable pH soils. Aluminum toxicity is well known on Acid Wheatland Soils of Oklahoma. Palouse soils also have serious problems with low pH and low micro-biological activity....Liming and fluid lime application may be required to neutralize the soil and free up sequested nutrients found in Acid Wheatland Soils.  The only solution on high pH soils is dual placement techniques, TAPPS, and Cross Row Feeding.
 
Why does Cross Row Feeding work so well with No-tillage systems?
 
Rotational Band Loading adds a lot of value over time by leaving the old nutrient bands undisturbed and thus single disc openers are required....But the most valuable economics comes from the increasing OM and the improved CEC.  The soil bacteria contributes tremendous amounts of uniform distributed plant food during the growing season.  Established No-till producers will tell you that their No-till cropping systems require less placed P and less placed N...the soil bacteria and the soil life are doing exactly what they are supposed to do. In fact it is all natural....the only thing missing is the buffalo. 
 
It does become very important to spread the harvest residue evenly and finely chopped for immediately bacterial decomposition....New combines are geared for No-till residue management and even distribution of OM. Avoid harvesting or bailing residue....No ethanol plant can pay you enough for the 5,000 to 10,000 pounds of residue per acre evenly distributed across the land.  Producers who spread manure know the costs associated with adding OM...why not just grow it and let it fall to ground where it does the most good.  Energy costs are now so high that the value of the residue has doubled.
 
If you have low pH soil below 5.5 the soil bacteria are replaced by fungi which make no contribution of any significance. In fact OM can build rapidly in low pH soils.  The Olympic Rainforest is a pretty good example of how acid soils slow down the OM release. The forrest floor is about 2 feet deep in decaying OM. No soil building bacteria can be found in the system....but lots of mushrooms and fungus phylum plant life.  In fact low pH soils mean more soil borne fungal diseases such as Cercosperella Foot Rot (eyespot) and Cephlasporium Fungus Stripe....pretty serious diseases of wheat that you seldom find in 7 or greater pH soils.
 
Doesn't weather play a big role in raising high protein quality spring wheat?
 
Weather is the single biggest factor....plan for failure and that is normally what you get...Pick a good or average yield goal and fertilize accordingly...do not go overboard on the nutrients....study the rainfall pattern, side dress the spring wheat at 30 to 60 days and do all you can to protect the crop...normally everything works out.  Flooded fields and severe outbreaks of FHB can reduce protein, falling numbers and test weight.
 
Dark Northern Spring Wheat makes yield first and protein second...if the protein premium is significant, the risk is reduced with extra nutrients...if the protein premium is not significant fertilize for yield only and hope for hot weather at filling.  Hot winds at filling and drier conditions provide a DHV kernel.   Thus Montana, western North Dakota, and Southern Idaho will always be the primary supplier of high quality DNSW for export.  In fact Portland wheat buyers often specify a premium for DNSW 15% protein, Montana Origin...assuring good falling numbers and a DHV kernel. Coast prices can reach high values...also Logan, Utah where high protein spring wheat can sell for $6.50 per bushel.
 
Will this work with Winter Wheat?

   
Shovel penetrates non frozen soil. Winter wheat continues to grow in snow cover. Adjoining summer fallow winter wheat field  supplies snow to no till winter wheat field.

 
Yes, Winter wheat needs high placed P efficiency to harden the plant for winter survival. Rapid uptake of place P in the fall thickens the cell wall and improves winter survival. This is why solution 32 or 28 is never used on winter wheat...hardiness is greatly compromised due to a thin cell wall from rapid growth.  Plus you can side dress the winter wheat with Exactrix NH3 in the spring.  So you can use less hardy varieties with higher yield potential.  TAM wheats might work in Nebraska.....Nebraska wheats might work in North Dakota. 
 
The plant breeder knows that the genes of high yield and winter hardiness never go together....high yielding soft white winter wheats always have spring wheat parents.           

No-till standing stubble improves yield potential.        Black fallow reduces yield potential. Frozen Soil... no shovel penetration, no moisture infiltration.
 
High yielding winter wheat varieties always break dormancy early.  If the winter wheat variety breaks dormancy it will never re-harden or be as tolerant to the cold, plant desiccating winds.  Thus standing stubble allows the winter wheat to be protected and continue growing under the snow cover...The stubble provides the winter protection and results in better yields under stressful spring conditions.
 
Yield limitations are often determined by the tillage system and the fertilizer placement technique.....Snow trapping and Cross Row Feeding allows for higher yields with more moisture and a thrifty plant.
 
Go to Movie\TomShute.rm and see winter wheat being side dressed with an Exactrix single disc tool bar.
 
What is Cross Row Feeding TM?
 
Each seed row can access two placed bands of fertility.  Thus the emerging plant has double the targets for placed P.  This double target effect allows more exchange sites for the fine hair roots as the seminals branch out in all directions.  When the crown roots take off they find double targets.
 
Each seed row of DNSW has it's own dedicated band of placed nutrients...and yet the adjoining band and seed row is moved closer with it's inside dedicated band....thus the seminals are able to access two bands of NPS in the first 30 days.
 
The seed rows are no longer equilateral.  The openers are aligned on different center lines. The row spacing will have the appearance of paired row 6/9, 5/10 or 4/11 when a 7.5" drill is used.
 
Another bonus results from Cross Row Feeding...Off Row Light Effect.  The plant can absorb more light and yet not interfere with the adjoining row.

 
What is Off Row Light Effect? 
 
If you raise corn you know the outside rows of the field margin develop bigger corn ears and bigger healthier plants...most of the effect is referred to as Edge Row Effect.  Wheat will also do the same....but there will be more grain and less straw...the light simply penetrates into the canopy deeper and longer.  This gives a slight yield boost.
 
Another advantage of this technique is lower humidity in the canopy.  Thus less foliar disease pressure by venting or reducing humidity.
 
One aspect that has not been studied is angle of seeding...it would appear Northwest to Southeast is best. This minimizes shading and keeps more leaves exposed to sunlight early in the morning and late in the afternoon.  This angle may also apply to Relay Intercrop.
 
What about weed control?
 
The only disadvantage is that weed control in crop must be top notch.  The fertility is trapped so well..... that wild oats and broadleaf weeds never find the placed bands. The wheat feeds and the weeds starve with this technique.
 
Could yields be reduced because of the 5/10 paired row effect?
 
No, in fact never, yields tend to be about 5% to 10% higher.  In fact with RTK guidance next years crop can be seeded in the 10 inch dead band area. Snow Trapping techniques seem to be just as good or better since the new crop is always between and not in the stubble.  So spring wheat and winter wheat rotations work very well.  Also peas, soybeans, flax, and canola can be seeded in the dead band area.  Cross Row Feeding does not cost an additional dime in machinery cost....only the labor to change the machine.
 
Swathing is seldom practiced now that producers have the Roundup Harvest label in short season spring wheat country.....so laying down grain on standing stubble has become an obsolete and costly exercise.
 
How do I set up my Case SDX or Deere 1890 to Cross Row Feed TM ?
 

 

Go to www.exactrix.com/dewi.htm and www.exactrix.com/sdxww.htm to review the single disc drills. The front and rear gangs of the single disc machines are rearranged. Setting up the drill does take some time. But the result is well worth it.
 
Remember you will not only set new center lines but you must make sure that the front opener is delivering nutrients and seed to the inside in relation to the rear opener. The rear opener must face the bands of the front opener and seed to the inside of the paired row, to produce Cross Row Feeding.  
 
You will be moving openers to accomplish the leverage fertility technique.  But the payback and resulting yields will tell you it was the right thing to do.
 
Isn't Cross Row Feeding a Patented Method and Process?
 
Yes it is....About 1993 .....but as gift from Exactrix we will license owners of the single disc seeders at no charge....we will even help with the drill set up drawings to make sure you understand how significant the technique is. A major financial investment was made in Cross Row Feeding development with considerable testing....it is such a simple technique and totally applicable to Exactrix TAPPS application.
 
So make sure you understand....there is no charge....a 5% to 10% yield adder and a protein advantage....a gift for Exactrix owners raising high protein quality wheats.
 
One of the major keys to make Cross Row Feeding work is to "tame the NH3" into liquid state at the injection point and to inject the material with little or no additional soil disturbance.
 
How was Cross Row Feeding discovered?
 
Like all major discovers, Radar, Penicillin and Vulcanized Rubber it was a mistake.....It was never planned.  The story includes the author on a demonstration with a new Yielder drill and the mistake turned into a major discovery at 30 days, 60 days and at harvest.  Always make sure nobody messes with your drive sprockets after calibration....the small 40 acre field was fertilized and seeded twice at half rates. The second pass was on seeded ground, with tractor compaction, the drill rows not aligned, in row competition at overlaps... just trying to find who changed the drill meter drive sprockets made for a long 80 acre day.  Bad news when you are trying to make up for lost time and..... the unplanned event turned into a serendipitous discovery and really good news at harvest.

What is the future for top dressed nitrogen fertilizer?
Probably not to good! The above picture groups show non uniform application of dry nitrogen fertilizer in blue grass seed production. A good visual indication of why three times more nitrogen had to be applied. Uniformity of application, timing, dual placement in the root zone always out perform all other approaches. Single disc openers allow perennial crops to be properly fertilized. Exactrix allows no-till placement of nutrients.

 

"Quality is always remembered well after price is forgotten."
Exactrix Products How Exactrix Works Product Application E-Mail Home
ExactrixTM Global Systems LLC
4501 East Trent Ave.
Spokane, WA 99212
(509) 535.9925  fax(509) 535.9989

Buy or rent the ExactrixTM Direct Injection System and get top support at a fraction of the cost of existing systems.