Saturday, July 3, 2010

Make It A Double

So today covers two busy days, Friday and Saturday, of foliar fertilizer applications, mainly to soybeans. The soybean applications had two areas of focus: applications at the R1 stage of growth (see picture) and the follow-up to glyphosate applications. Regarding the latter, our research has shown no negative effects to the mixing of ACLF Manganese fertilizer with glyphosate, rather than waiting 9 days after application of glyphosate to make the Manganese application. But we continue to test. And regarding the R1 application, it is our recommendation that foliar fertilization to soybeans in 30 inch rows not be made until the R1 stage of growth. If you look closely at the picture below, there is a small purple flower at the base of the lowest trifoliate, indicating that this soybean plant is entering the reproductive stage. Now stand back and give her some room. Here I am again spraying soybeans. Although I am used to it, this sprayer may look pretty strange to some. But it is very effective for plot work. It is an old, I mean, experienced Hagie 8250. But we have removed the large tanks and added five 30 gallon tanks for plots. We have also cut down the boom to 15 feet, just the width of a plot. And with the gps globe on top, it may look like a space craft. Perhaps someday I should emerge from the cab wearing a conehead costume!
Here is a picture during a foliar application. There is plenty to watch: the gal/A and speed display on the Raven, the Red Ball (Wilgers) for each nozzle to make sure they are all level indicating even nozzle output, the pressure gauge for the desired psi, the JD gps monitor to make sure it is recording the application, and make sure I am driving straight, as this doesn't have auto steer. I have taken to turning off the radio during plot spraying to minimize distractions. I don't want to make Stephanie mad.

I was driving by the wheat plots yesterday and it looks like wheat harvest is not too far off. This should be an early harvest, especially compared to last year, which was way behind on heat units. I should check with Stephanie, who keeps track of this stuff, to compare this year to last for heat units, and report it to you.
Here is something rare at the NCRS: sunflower plots. They are looking pretty good I think. We are watering them with drip tape that was laid down. It is pretty dry and we could use a rain. Both overhead linear irrigation systems are currently running this weekend on Farms 3 and 5. We will see how the sunflowers turn out. We have always had a severe bird problem prior to harvest in the past. But we haven't told them about it yet, so maybe they won't bother it this year. Mums the word.

Another application I made today was a late application of N to corn using drop nozzles. I just use spray nozzles turned sideways to make a band application. In this treatment, the sidedress application several weeks ago was split so that some of the N is applied later with drop nozzles. However, previous testing has not shown an advantage to this split application. But it will be tested again here.

Well that concludes this installment. I hope you have enjoyed your stay. We are up to date with spraying for now, and can take a few days off for our nation's birthday. I notice that this year Independence Day and the Fouth of July fall on the same day. So enjoy and be thankful.