September 30, 2016

Do You Want Zinc With That? Fall Fertilizer Strategies

By Wolf Trax

“Do you want zinc with that?”


Retailers should be thinking about that question when they talk with customers about fall fertilizer applications. Paul Reising, senior product manager for micronutrients with Compass Minerals, and Gary Tuxhorn, principal scientist with Winfield US, hosted a recent CropLife webinar for ag retailers to review:

  • The current state of zinc levels in farm soils and their impact on corn yields
  • Whether liquid starter fertilizers are supplying enough zinc for all corn fields
  • Guidelines to add Wolf Trax Zinc DDP® to variable rate fertilizer applications
  • And more!


Soil Zinc Levels Are Declining…And So Are Tissue Levels

In this first highlighted section, Paul and Gary share the latest soil test summary information from the International Plant Nutrition Institute (IPNI) and a summary of the 2016 tissue test results from Winfield US’ Nutra-Links® program. Both summaries represent large data groups, and make the case for retailers and growers to pay attention to zinc fertility for their 2017 crop.



Liquid Starter Fertilizers for Corn Aren’t Suppling Enough Zinc in All Conditions

In this part of the webinar, Paul reminds retailers to not just check off the box next to zinc fertility when a grower plans to apply a liquid starter fertilizer for corn. Recent trial work suggests that the zinc content of most liquid starter fertilizers is too low for high-yielding corn fields, especially where soils have low zinc levels.



Adding more zinc to a liquid starter product is expensive. A more affordable option is to add Wolf Trax Zinc DDP to a dry fertilizer application.

For more information on the third-party field trial, read the article, “Does Your Liquid Starter Fertilizer for Corn Provide Enough Zinc?”


A Proven Method For Adding Zinc to a Variable Rate Fertilizer Application

Retailers in the Winfield US (formerly United Suppliers) network have been using Wolf Trax Zinc DDP for more than a decade. A number of retailers wanted to apply Zinc DDP in the fall with P-K applications, so Gary Tuxhorn worked to find a sound, scientific way to add Zinc DDP – a fertilizer coating – to variable rate applications.


This video:

  • Reviews the method Gary used to determine how to make Zinc DDP work with variable rate fertilizer applications
  • Provides step-by-step instructions to add Zinc DDP to fall variable rate applications



Sales Tips, Equipment Update and More

The full webinar covers many more valuable topics for ag retailers as they begin the 2016 fall fertilizer season. To view the full webinar online, go to the CropLife website.  This webinar is approved for 0.5 CEU in Nutrient Management.

About the Author Wolf Trax