LATE MAIZE IS COMING IN STRONG AND FERTILIZATION WILL BE CRUCIAL TO ACHIEVE HIGH YIELDS
Bahía Blanca, November 30, 2020 – In the next days, the Argentine producers will start the late maize sowing, a productive plan that has been growing in importance in the last years, so much so that it already represents more than 50% of the surface planted with that the cereal. In this productive strategy, fertilization has a fundamental role, so it is worth reviewing some key concepts to execute it efficiently.
With that purpose, Profertil, leader in granulated urea production in Argentina, recently carried out an online training with the participation of the renowned INTA specialist Gustavo Ferrari, who highlighted that “in late sowing dates, refertilization with nitrogen allows a 20% increase in yield potential”.
The current coarse grain campaign 2020/21 is crossed by the effects of La Niña phenomenon, which generates a decrease in rainfall, with a particular focus on spring. “But in these cases, there is usually a recovery from December, January and March,” said Ferrari.
Within the framework of the videoconference cycle organized by Profertil, called “If we are going to leave a mark, let it be sustainable”, the INTA expert reminded that “the rainfall shift increases the participation of late sowings, to give stability to maize, making its critical period coincide with rainfall”.
During the dialogue he had with Mirta Toribio, head of Research and Development of Profertil, the expert showed that “the late dates put an interesting floor to the production when the expected yields are around 8,000 kg/ha, while if the goal is to obtain more than 12,000 kg/ha early dates would be convenient. Between 9,000 and 12,000, depending on the year.”
Ferrari also mentioned other interesting concepts to consider:
- In the late dates, health issues have more weight.
- Nutrition is a fundamental factor in achieving high performance. It is key to make a good nutritional diagnosis.
- Sowing density and fertilization must be well adjusted. In their trials, the highest yields were obtained with 75,000 plants/ha and 220 units of nitrogen.
Accordingly, Toribio recalled that Profertil has been spreading for many years the Best Management Practices (BMPs) for maize nutrition, which include determining the appropriate dose (based on diagnostic tools such as soil analysis), choosing sources with balanced nutrition in mind, and applying them at the right time and in the right way.
“The BMPs make it possible to increase the efficiency of nutrient use, decrease yield gaps and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, increasing carbon sequestration in agricultural soils,” the specialist said.
He added that fertilization is key to this, especially with technologies such as eNe Total Plus, which reduces the loss of nitrogen through the volatilization of ammonia and increases efficiency in terms of kilos of grain produced in relation to the carbon dioxide emitted.
With these strategies and tools, late maize has great chances to continue growing in Argentina, and to collaborate with the stability of the productive plans and their sustainability.