February 15, 2016

Wolf Trax Micronutrient Fertilizers Improve Potato Yield, Quality and Return

By Wolf Trax

Potatoes have high nutrient requirements. And because they are often planted into coarsely textured soils, this makes them prone to micronutrient deficiencies.  Micronutrient deficiencies may reduce plant growth, yield and quality. For example, a lack of boron during the season can reduce tuber size and quality.

In 2014, Holland Agricultural Services conducted fertilizer trials in the central portion of the Columbia Basin, near Othello, Washington, to evaluate the role micronutrients play in potato yield, quality and profitability. The replicated trial compared three fertilizer treatments:

  1. Grower Standard N-P-K-S with no micronutrients
  2. Grower Standard N-P-K-S with granular zinc sulfate and granular boron
  3. Grower Standard N-P-K-S with Wolf Trax Zinc DDP® and Boron DDP

In general, the fertilizer trials showed that micronutrients can have a big impact on potato yield and quality, and therefore, return per acre.

Potato-yield-chart

The above chart shows how both micronutrient treatments increased yield and quality. However, Wolf Trax DDP Nutrients increased the amount of U.S. #1 potatoes by an additional 11 percent compared to granular micronutrients. The Wolf Trax treatment also increased potato size, with the most U.S. #1 potatoes greater than 6 ounces.

These yield and quality improvements translated to $224 more gross revenue per acre over the Grower Standard practices and $159 more than the granular micronutrients (at $8.50 cwt potato price).

Field-insights

For more details of this trial, download the Field Insights pdf here.

Wolf Trax DDP Nutrients proved to be the best micronutrient choice agronomically. And compared to granular micronutrients, DDP Nutrients have other benefits for retailers, too. DDP Nutrients can be easily coated onto dry fertilizer granules in a blendand  take up less storage space.

While this trial focused on zinc and boron, farmers need to select the right micronutrients for their growing conditions. Any combination of Wolf Trax DDP Nutrients can be coated onto dry fertilizer. To see the full line-up of Wolf Trax products, click here.

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About the Author Wolf Trax