Compared to corn, legume crop production thrives under slightly higher pH (6.2 to 6.8). Legumes, like soybean and alfalfa, form symbiotic relationships with rhizobia to form nodules in roots that biologically fix nitrogen. If the soil pH is too low, this can negatively affect the rhizobia… Read More
From the Fields.
Ideas, information and insights from real farmers on effective crop nutrient management strategies.
In general, phosphorus is immobile in soil due to the chemical bonds a phosphate ion can form. Phosphorus from commercial fertilizer and soluble phosphorus in the soil — phosphate — is either present as H2PO4¯ or HPO4¯2 when the soil pH is near neutral. These are… Read More
To put it simply, potassium regulates the opening and closing of plant stomata. Stomates are the pores on plant leaves that allow for gas and water vapor exchange. When plants have adequate potassium, the guard cells swell and allow for complete closure of the stoma… Read More
In short, yes, there are differences in methods. The phosphorus soil test is an index of phosphorus availability, which ultimately tells a farmer the likelihood of a response to fertilizer application. Universities have conducted many site years of research correlating plant available phosphorus in soil… Read More
On Farmer Q&A, we previously answered a question about the difference between phosphorus soil test methods, but how exactly are soil test methods correlated to plant nutrient availability? Soil test correlation is the process of determining the relationship between plant nutrient uptake (or yield) and… Read More
Immobile nutrients, like phosphorus, are available from a smaller fraction of soil that is near plant roots known as the root surface sorption zone (right). The size of the root surface sorption zone is influenced by soil texture. Coarser textured soils have a larger volume… Read More
There is a common misconception that if a nutrient is mobile within the soil, it is also mobile or can be translocated within the plant. The mobility of a nutrient in the soil is associated with how much can be leached – nitrate or sulfate,… Read More
All essential nutrients have a critical concentration – the minimum concentration required for plant growth. These concentrations vary from plant species to species. However, we can categorize 14 of the essential nutrients into two categories based on the minimum concentrations needed by plants. Macronutrients –… Read More