CompleteCitrus Newsletter

July 27, 2020

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Essential Nutrition for Citrus Through Summer Months

We are in prime rainy season here in the Sunshine State and while the trees benefit from this natural irrigation, nutrient demand of N, Ca, and K is still crucial. Fertigation spoon-feeding can be timed throughout these rainy months giving the tree essential fuel and nutrients it needs for fruit development.

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Fertigation of key nutrients can also aid in stress reduction. Water stress for example, results in reduced turgor pressure which impacts several key processes in plants including cell division and enlargement. Water stress can lead to smaller leaves and fruit, thereby reducing crop yield and quality. Reduced photosynthesis is one of the first effects of water stress thus reducing the energy available to drive crop growth and yield.

Calcium promotes good root health and growth so the roots are better able to explore the soil to extract all the water that is in the soil. Roots that are calcium-deficient are shorter, thicker, with shortened, root hairs.

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Roots with adequate calcium

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Roost with insufficient calcium

Soluble Ca and K mitigate heat stress

Humans sweat and the evaporation of water from skin cools us. Thus, our body temperature is 98°F when the air temperature on a hot day may be 108°F. In a similar manner, plant leaves transpire and the evaporation of water from the leaf cools the leaf. Leaves that are transpiring water are usually several degrees cooler than the air around them. Calcium, along with potassium, regulates the opening and closing of the guard cells around the stomates in leaves. Plants that lack sufficient Ca lose the ability to regulate the stomates and plants can become overheated.

Calcium also plays a second key role as part of the communication system in plant by signaling the water stress and triggering plant responses to water stress.

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Calcium is required for the active transport of K across guard cell membranes in the stomata. This induces the opening/closing movement of the stomata regulating excessive water loss through transpiration during drought periods.

 

 

How can you provide the Ca and K your citrus crop need

YaraTera® NITRAKAL™

YaraTera NITRAKAL 5-0-7 is a liquid fertilizer designed for fertigation derived from YaraLiva® CN-9® and potassium nitrate. YaraTera NITRAKAL provides a balanced formulation of nitrogen, potassium and calcium that are immediately available for plant uptake.

YaraLiva® Calcium Nitrate

How do you ensure that your crops have all the calcium they need to manage water stress? YaraLiva Calcium Nitrate is the ideal choice to provide your crop with calcium.

YaraLiva products have typically been used early in the spring to provide crops with readily available nitrate-N when soil and air temperatures are cool. However, the soluble calcium in YaraLiva fertilizers also plays a key role in helping crops overcome environmental stresses such as heat, water, salinity and sodicity. YaraLiva Calcium Nitrate needs to be part of your season-long fertilizer program in order to reach optimal yield and quality.

YaraLiva calcium nitrates provide fast-acting nitrate-N, alongside strength-building calcium. In combination, these nutrients fuel prolonged growth. Plants and trees treated with YaraLiva calcium nitrates are naturally healthier and less sensitive to stress during growth. Then, critically, in the build-up to harvest, YaraLiva calcium nitrate fertilizers improve the size, strength and appearance of harvested crops.

 


Learn more about the CompleteCitrus Solution.

 


Kelsey Gunthorp
Sales Agronomist, Yara North America
kelsey.gunthorp@yara.com

Trey Cutts
Market Development Manager, Yara North America
trey.cutts@yara.com


 

About this newsletter...

Yara's CompleteCitrus Newsletters represent many years of knowledge with concentration on Florida citrus nutrition. Articles address nutrition's role in the plant processes which influences the final outcome as the season progresses. The goal of the newsletter is to provide citrus growers with the best available information with which to manage their production optimally, with minimum environmental impact, consistently from one year to the next. Tree health is recognized as a major element in sustainable production. Nutrition is also fundamental in establishing and maintaining optimal performance and tree longevity. The "whys" are addressed with the "how to" in a straightforward and practical manner.

YaraLiva Calcium Nitrate Fertilization of Citrus

The following brief video reviews the reasons why YaraLiva Calcium Nitrate is superior to ammonium nitrate for citrus fertilization. Bill Easterwood, Ph.D., Yara North America's Director of Agronomic Services, reviews research supporting the use of calcium nitrate to improve tree health, citrus yield and quality.

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