Blogging by the Bushel
With numerous challenges over the past several years for producers, we at Mercer Landmark understand the need for a comprehensive risk management solution. We seek to provide our customers with unparalleled service to ensure maximum results.

Archive for January, 2017

By~ Ben Stoller

As growers continue to seek ways to limit crop production expenses and increase production per acre, the agronomy team at Mercer Landmark also searches for ways to assist.  One solution: pre-pay or finance chemicals before February 1.

Paying or financing crop protection products before February 1 gives growers the opportunity to obtain the lowest prices of the season.

Does cash flow make this difficult?  Many manufacturers offer attractive (even 0%) financing rates with repayment terms as late as December 2017.

The Mercer Landmark Wheat Health Program is another way: purchase your wheat nitrogen from Mercer Landmark and receive pre-pay pricing on wheat fungicide, insecticide and adjuvants with payment not due until the 30th of following month after application.  Grower must enroll in program by April 30, 2017.

The Mercer Landmark Fungicide Advantage Program allows growers to enroll corn and soybean fungicide acres by May 5, 2017 and receive deferred payment until October 31, 2017 with approved credit through Mercer Landmark.

Please contact your Mercer Landmark agronomy team soon for assistance with your crop protection plan in order to capitalize on savings and production for your 2017 crops.

Thank you for your patronage!

By~ Brad Miller

With waterhemp now in our area I get asked how to control it.  Ohio State recommends using a residual before planting such as Metribuzin, Valor XLT, Sonic, Boundary or the Authority products. And use different modes of action such as Liberty, Flexstar, Cobra, Xtendmax or Engenia  post to help with weed resistance.  I also get asked about our side X side results and if fungicide worked last year since it was so dry.   On soybeans ,over a  4 year period, fungicide averaged 3.2 bushel more over untreated acres and 2.7 bu/acre increase last year.  So over a 4 year period, at $10 beans, taking out the cost of the fungicide, you are adding $18 per acre to your bottom Line.   Last year you would have had a return on investment of $15/acre.   Another product that showed promise and did really well this year was Toggle, which had on average a 5 bu/acre increase when used on beans.    To get more Information on Toggle and to get a copy of the Yield Data Books see your Local Mercer Landmark Representative.

By~ Jeff Prickett

As I visit with farmers about their upcoming starter fertilizer needs for corn, I have had a few questions arise about starter fertilizer. Questions such as: What is the best fertilizer for 2”x2” placement? How much 28%N can I run in a 2”x2” placement situation? If I have high P levels, do I really need 10-34-0 in the mix? How much and what kind of starter fertilizer can I run in-furrow and not hurt my seed?

According to Penn State University Extension, Starter Fertilizer is defined as a small quantity of fertilizer nutrients applied in close proximity to the seed at planting. Starter fertilizers enhance the development of emerging seedlings by supplying essential nutrients in accessible locations near the roots.

Starter fertilizers are most beneficial when crops are planted into cold, wet soils in the early spring, regardless of soil fertility. Using a starter is especially important in conservation tillage systems.

Nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) are the key nutrient components in a starter fertilizer program.

On high phosphorus soils a nitrogen only starter will usually provide a similar starter response without adding additional P to an already high P soil.

Many of my customers have high P1 levels (over 100lb/acre) and don’t necessarily want to add additional P. A good starter program (2”x2” placement) I would recommend would be 10-15gpa of 28% N plus 2 to 3gpa of Thio-sul (12-0-0-26S). If you are set up for dry fertilizer starter a good starter program would be to run 150 to 200lb/acre of AMS (21-0-0-24S). For liquid starter, I would recommend adding 1qt/acre of a chelated zinc product such as Winfield’s Citri-Che 10% Zinc or Ultra-Che EDTA 9% Zinc. For dry starter, I would recommend adding 6 to 8oz/acre of Wolftax Zinc DDP. The above rates of starter fertilizer in a 2”x2” placement are seed safe and well below the established safety threshold of 70lbs of total salts per acre. Example: 15 gallons per acre of 28%N = 45lbs of N/acre.

If you have low P soils, 10-34-0 makes an excellent liquid starter. I have many of my customers running 8-15gpa of 10-34-0 plus 2 to 3gpa of Thio-sul plus zinc. Or some use a combination of 28%N and 10-34-0 plus Thio-Sul and Zinc. In a dry starter situation 100lbs/acre of MAP (11-52-0) plus 100lbs/acre of AMS (21-0-0-24S) makes an excellent dry starter program. Wolftrax Zinc can also be added to this blend to address Zinc needs.

For an in-furrow starter (placed with seed) I would recommend staying with 5gpa or less of 10-34-0 plus chelated zinc.  Do not use 28%N or Sulfur products as seed damage may occur. Our seed partners at DeKalb/Asgrow have a great article on row starter seed safety. It can be found at the following link:

If you have any questions or concerns about your starter fertilizer program, please feel free to reach out to any of us at Mercer Landmark Agronomy. We have a wide selection of fertilizer products to meet your individual row starter needs.

We are here to help!