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Watch for Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium Deficiencies


If any of your fields flood, you may be concerned about nutrient leaching from the excess rainfall. While nutrient deficiencies can be difficult to diagnose through just a soil test, an analysis of key nutrients in the soil can help you establish a plan.
Each year, the Golden Harvest Research Team collects many corn and soybean soil samples to measure nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, and many results show deficiencies. Nutrient deficiencies can be difficult to diagnose from a soil test, but nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium levels are important to monitor for optimizing plant health and yield. 

Here is an overview of why all 3 nutrients are so important for your corn and soybean fields, along with environmental triggers to be on the lookout for.

​​​​​​​Steps to Correct Nutrient Deficiencies
The best way to avoid nitrogen, phosphorus or potassium nutrient deficiencies is a well-planned fertility program. For nitrogen deficiency in corn, plan an in-season sidedress application as soon as lower levels are noticed. While various forms of nitrogen are available, select a form that has a higher amount of nitrate, or plant available form. The best method to sidedress nitrogen in corn is to inject, or dribble, nitrogen near the root system for rapid uptake. If injecting or dribbling is not an option, broadcast urea granules. 

For a phosphorus or potassium deficiency, in-season corrections are rarely effective. Review current soil test levels, understand the current crop’s phosphorus or potassium removal rates, and plan for a fertility application after harvest. 

Contact your Golden Harvest Seed Advisor with questions or for additional agronomic insights.

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