Essential Nutrients for Boosting Corn and Soybean Yields
18 Mar 244m 15s

Focusing on more than just the primary nutrients of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium (N, P, and K), Kevin Matthews talks about the significance of micronutrients (sulfur, zinc, calcium) which often get sidelined but are crucial for enhancing yield and profitability, especially in challenging economic times.

00:00 Kevin Matthews here. We're in the agri liquids booth here at the Commodity Classic 2024 going into a real tight 00:06 economic growing season. And there's, there's more things to look at than NP and K out to Stephanie. 00:12 Yeah. And you know, in these tight years, NP and K is where guys like to stick. They wanna kind of cut back 00:17 and they look at those other micronutrients as secondary nutrients, which isn't always the best thing to do. 00:23 'cause you may actually lo lose some dollars that you can get at that end of the season. Okay. What, what is one of the best things for my corn? 00:29 And then we'll talk about soybeans next, but what, what's that one nutrient other than MP and K that I really need to focus on? 00:36 I know what I want to, I know what I want you to say. So the first one I'm gonna say is zinc probably. There you go. Sulfur close second. 00:43 Yep. Now that zinc, you know, sulfur, we can, we can get it in a lot of our nitrogen products when we're putting that out readily, easily. 00:50 The fact is we've just come off of a big rush of, of different biology, how to enhance biology. And the zinc is the candy for our microbes 01:00 that feeds the biology, which our grass plants love. Right? Absolutely. And you know, it's important that we get that zinc early on. 01:06 So get some at planting time and if we do have those low, low levels, you know, watch that soil test those tissue tests 01:11 and you maybe can address that in season as well. All right. So you talk about early on, so we got, you know, we're, we're living off the seed 01:18 and we we're building a bigger root mass as we can possibly build with that zinc. Then what happens next? 01:26 We're, we're handing from seed to the plant to the roots that's growing on the roots, 01:31 but it's a really big time fixing to happen in that plant and that's why that extra root mass from 01:36 that zinc is so important. Absolutely. It's gonna help, you know, with the other nutrient uptake, 01:40 but water, when water gets challenging, so that bigger root system that we can build, the better that plant's gonna be overall. 01:46 And you know, within a few weeks, depending on your gdu, you're gonna be deciding to girth of 01:50 that ear on that little short corn. Yep. It goes fast, you know, from when that seed emerges. Yep. Um, when it stops feeding off that, that corn itself 01:57 to feeding off the environment and producing that ear. Yep. So we know that outside MP 02:03 and K are whichever micronutrient, macro, any nutrient that is your most limiting factors. What we need to focus on, obviously. 02:11 But we definitely not, don't need to forget our zinc, but let's talk about soybeans real quick. So we want to increase our ri the zoia is on those soybeans 02:19 and keep real good lush plants. We was eating supper the other night, Galen and yourself was talking to us 02:25 and um, we brought up a discussion about how we can really improve that rhizobia and, and make for a healthy bean plant 02:32 and help handle these harsh conditions. What, what nutrient do you like there? Calcium is the biggest thing that I've been seeing for, 02:39 you know, that overall microbial life there, that soybean plant and getting enough calcium really helps with a lot of other nutrient uptakes in, 02:46 in interactions within that plant. And making sure we have enough calcium throughout the season is very critical. 02:51 Alright. Of your, of your customers that come to your new customers, how many of 'em realize those two components of those two crops, 02:58 how critical, critical those two elements are? I think zinc on corn, the majority of guys at least have a general understanding. 03:05 Not everybody, the calcium on soybeans. I think that's a pretty new topic that most people don't realize 03:10 that how important that really is. Yeah. So tough times I know is depends on your freight and everything. 03:16 General ballpark on a dollar per acre, what would a person be looking at to be able to add those two components? 03:23 One for their corn crop and one for their soybean crop. Just general ballpark number, You're gonna need probably a bushel 03:29 or two, you know, of corn to cover that zinc cost. And then about Of today's price or the price we're hoping for, 03:34 Hopefully the price we get, then we'll be sitting a little bit better ahead of air. So good deal. Not a huge cost per 03:39 acre to add those into that program, But that, that small cost could cost us huge by keeping that plant imbalanced. Correct. 03:48 Exactly. Exactly. We could lose more in yield, you know, maybe by spending that dollar on nitrogen 03:53 or phosphorus when we really should be sending spending that on zinc or calcium. Well Stephanie, I appreciate your time. 04:00 Uh, been a great classic. A little bit different here in Houston. It is, but uh, the weather's been pretty nice. 04:05 A lot better than we're in Michigan. Isn't it? Better Than Michigan? For sure. Thanks for stopping. Bye. 04:09 Yep, stay safe.

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