WolfTrax develops method to put phosphorus in its place

Think about going to the field carting along 50 pounds of a high tech phosphorus fertilizer concentrate that packs the same punch as 1,500 lb. of conventional granular phosphorus.

Just to sweeten the phosphorus cake, what if it was no longer delivered as a distinct separate product but was instead firmly affixed to the nitrogen and potassium prills?

Better yet, what if all the required phosphorous was firmly affixed to the seed itself?

Wolf Trax of Winnipeg focuses its attention on easing farmers’ volume and weight load at seeding time.

It all comes down to concentrating nutrients into the most manageable form possible, while still delivering the full shot of nutrient requirements to the plants, according to Wolf Trax’s Mark Goodwin.

“First we figured out how to keep micronutrients glued to conventional NPK granules. That’s our DDP product. The obvious next step was to simplify things for farmers by applying a phosphorus coating to their nitrogen and potassium granules,” Goodwin said.

“This product is called Nu Trax P+. It replaces 35 lb. of P2O5 per acre of pop up that growers typically use on moderate or high phosphorus fields. That’s any field with a soil test Olsen P level higher than 20 p.p.m. We are also working on this approach as a seed coating, so the seed would have all its phosphorous coated on the shell.”

He said the product is in a form that offers early delivery of phosphorus and some micronutrients to the plants.

“It’s applied to your N and K prills and you can be confident it won’t flake off,” he said.

“As a phosphorous coating on the seed, I would have to call it a super pop-up fertilizer. It’s equal to or better than putting down 35 pounds of MAP in some situations. We’ve gone head-to-head in split-field trials with growers. It was NuTrax P+ versus MAP. In fields where the soil test phosphorus was higher than 15 to 20, we’re equal to or better in early crop emergence. Our cost is lower and ROI is better than MAP.”

Goodwin also conducted test plots with Nu Trax P+ phosphorus coated on nitrogen and potassium granules. The treated plots were compared to plots in which P205 was applied in the conventional manner as part of the typical blend of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. All phosphorus was applied at a rate equal to 35 lb. per acre phosphorus, or 70 lb. MAP.

The test used corn, canola, soybean and wheat. All weight measurements were taken at the same time at 14 days after emergence (DAE). Each weight sample was cut at the same height from a .25 metre square. The total fresh weight (TFW) was measured in grams.

TFW of the Nu Trax P+ corn was 20.7 grams, compared to TFW of the P2O5 corn at 18.9 grams.

TFW of the treated canola was 5.85 grams while TFW of the P205 canola was 4.93.

TFW of the treated soybeans was 10.8 grams while the P205 soybeans weighed in at 6.6 grams.

TFW of the treated wheat was 49.2 grams while the P205 wheat weighed in at 46.2 grams.

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