Four years of research by the Irrigation Research Foundation confirms corn yield increases of 10 Bu./A or greater when nitrogen managers or stabilizers are applied through irrigation systems.
After four years of trials in Yuma, Colorado, the Irrigation Research Foundation (IRF) has concluded application of nitrogen (N) management products through center-pivot irrigation systems provides a measurable yield increase of more than 10 Bu./A on irrigated corn.
The IRF is a private, non-profit, independent research and demonstration farm located in Yuma, Colorado. For more than 20 years, the IRF has been promoting proper water usage and conducting testing around important issues, crop production methods, products and technologies that affect the region’s agricultural producers. Founded in 1994, the IRF is committed to the conservation of the quality and quantity of the Ogallala Aquifer.
According to Charles Corey, executive director of the IRF, the use of a nitrogen manager helped keep more applied nitrogen available for plant uptake, regardless of field and moisture conditions.
Variations on weather conditions for the region added greater interest in what the results would reveal.
“In 2015, we had our entire annual rainfall in just two days,” says Corey. “It was a real nitrogen-management challenge given the degree of potential leaching and ideal environment for nitrogen loss.”
Untreated corn, Corey says, suffered considerably more under varying conditions – such as excessive rainfall, low water applications, both hot and cool temperatures and other environmental stresses throughout the four years of research trials.
“I think – based on our research results – that applying nitrogen-management products through some types of irrigation systems definitely adds value,” he says.
Here’s what the field research trials showed:
- Corn treated with 150 gallons per acre of UAN and NutriSphere-N® produced 15 more Bu./A than did 150 gallons of UAN applied without NutriSphere-N: 218.5 Bu./A compared to 203.5 Bu./A, respectively.
- The same research trial comparison another year yielded 203.5 Bu./A for the corn treated with the product versus 186.8 Bu./A for the untreated corn.
- In one trial, the yield differential from application of 175 gallons per acre of UAN with and without NutriSphere-N was 237.7 Bu./A and 225 Bu./A, respectively.
Corey adds that the biggest takeaway from these trials is ensuring farmers are getting the most value from the money they’re spending on N and nitrogen managers.