Monday, July 8, 2013
Refuge Corn Twice As Tall
Why is this? We have discussed this in depth on this blog. Some say GMO corn is literally falling apart. This seems more noticeable in stress type soils but I saw it vividly the last few years on the richest soil in this country where Herman Warsaw used to farm and over in Iowa where my friend Keith Schlapkohl does now.
John is more concerned about soil nutrition, he thinks liquid fertilizer is a waste and all of his clients only use large amounts of ammonium sulfate and urea fertilizers, phosphate when needed and lots of potash. His program is all built around calcium though and more and more people have gotten on the calcium bandwagon. Most still say however, base saturation doesn't work because the land grant universities have proved it doesn't work. It's funny that many of them use soil tests based on CEC and base saturation of nutrients. Their replicated plots have not revealed to them these basic principles of soil nutrition and plant health through non GMO.
John also uses lots of micro nutrients. The Hefty boys pulled hundreds of tissue tests and found micro nutrients short also. I have used more micro nutrients in the last nine years than I have my whole life. Local dealers actually stock them now but they are often out of them because they can't anticipate the demand for them.
My studies show the problem is complicated and GMO trait insertion may be as much to blame or more than the lack of fertilizer. Most farmers use the mainstream approach though that traits are worth the huge extra cost and so are liquid fertilizers. $6 per gallon for the cheapest liquid blends and $400 per ton for liquid nitrogen will buy a whole lot of lime and granular fertilizer.
This is what I have learned and this is what I think.
What do you think?