February 25, 2017

The Ultimate Spoon Fed Nutrient Plan




The ultimate spoon-fed nutrient plan


A program built around drip irrigation is showing dramatic yield improvements when nutrient delivery is matched to actual plant need.

For the corn and soybean producer, the investment in a drip irrigation system can be a challenge. The upfront cost of these systems can be intimidating; yet, once farmers start seeing the yield potential, the investment question may become easier to answer with a “yes.”


“When I worked with onion producers and drip irrigation, we saw amazing yield results,” recalls Jim Hunt, market segment leader for corn and soybean, Netafim. “Corn and soybeans are not as easy as some crops, so we focused on unlocking information about the crops to bring those yield deltas up to justify the expense of a drip system.”


The key is not to think of the system simply for irrigation, but as a nutrient application system — Netafim calls it Nutrigation. But that’s the question: what to deliver, and when? Working with Fred Below, plant physiologist and professor, University of Illinois, Netafim was able to develop a kind of nutrient delivery plan based on actual plant nutrient uptake.


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