Monday, July 25, 2011

New Plot Work in the Dakotas

So last Wednesday I went to Fargo, ND to visit some research plots that we established in the area. We are working with two contract researchers on crops such as spring wheat, sugarbeets and canola. Just like much of the country, it was hot. But it was worth seeing the progress. Below is a view of some of the spring wheat. They looked good in spite of all the rain this spring and also that has continued. Below area sales manager Kevin Abentroth takes a closer look at a spring wheat plot at another location. These plots also look good and hopefully will give us some new information.
Here is a close-up of the heads. Again, we were well satisfied with how the plots looked here.

Another crop that maybe not too many people are familiar with is canola. But there is quite a bit grown in North Dakota. The picture below shows the edge of an experiment where there was no applied fertilizer. It would be the outer five feet or so. The plot next to it had 100 lb/A of nitrogen with 6 gal/A of Pro-Germinator + 2 qt/A of Micro 500. Fertilizer makes quite a difference. This experiment is testing different N fertilizers for effect on growth and yield.

Below is a picture looking across the test. There are different treatments, but all have about 80 to 100 lb/A of N along with the Pro-Germnator and Micro 500. They look good and full.

Now adjacent to our plot is another plot evaluating something other than fertilizer. Contract researchers do not share details of other plots with freeloaders like us. But the main researcher did tell us that the only fertilizer applied was 100 lb/A of N (we think it was urea, but not sure.) But in the picture below, look at the resulting growth without application of phosphorus and micros like in our plots. It is much less and uneven. We would guess that the yield would be no more than half of what we would get with the full program. Responsible Nutrient Management does not mean applying no nutrients, but the right amount of needed nutrients.

And we had another spring wheat test at a location in South Dakota. Again, the wheat looks good and we are hopeful for results that will give the grower some more tools to use for getting more yield. That is why we are here.

So after this, which was on Thursday, we went up to Baltic, SD to get ready for the Hefty Field Day.