Boosting Fertilizer Blends for Maximum Turf Nutrition
Choosing the correct fertilizer for meeting turf's nutritional demands seems simple. Plant nutrition is important for turfgrass health. It all starts with a comprehensive program that is based on specific elements for determining exact nutrient inputs. One program or fertilizer is rarely acceptable for all segments and turf types. A basic understanding of yearly growth potential, and soil and tissue testing provides a foundation for building nutritional programs for turf.
After determining annual nutritional needs, selecting fertilizer sources becomes important for ensuring the purchased products are actually delivering the nutrients that are needed to drive plant growth and health. When purchasing granular fertilizer products, there are typically two choices between blended and homogeneous type products.
- Blended fertilizer – combination of multiple substrates blended together to reach a desired analysis of nutrients.
- Homogeneous fertilizers – compound material consisting of all nutrients on each particle for efficiently providing all nutrients to plant at each feeding site.
Blends are common in the turf industry and effective if the components are selected and blended properly. There are many substrates that are available for blending that results in many different analysis ranges. The more substrates that are added, the less effective the product becomes. See table below.
|Product Analysis||Components Blended||Distribution of 100 Particles||Claimed Nutrients||Product Nutrient Uptake Efficiency|
|1||100 = N, P, K, S||4 (N, P, K, S)||High|
|Homogeneous Blend Base
|3||50 = N, P, K, S
30 = N
20 = K, S
|4 (N, P, K, S)||Med-High
(Enhanced w/ homogeneous blend base)
|8||30 = N
20 = K
10 = K, S
10 = N, P
10 = K, S, Mg
10 = Granulated Sludge
5 = Fe
5 = Filler (gypsum)
7 (N, P, K, S, Ca, Mg, Fe)
*there are less claimed nutrients then blend components
(Nutrient distribution will limit nutrient access to the plant)
Turf is only capable of utilizing the nutrients that are delivered in close proximity. This is one of the challenges of blended products - the second challenge is blend components. Components such as iron oxides and fillers of calcium carbonate add nutrients to overall analysis but are not readily available. It is important to understand that nutrients sources vary and some do not provide immediately available nutrients that are suitable for certain desired situations.
To avoid the unknown, using homogeneous products like YaraMila® TURF ROYAL® eliminates all guesswork. YaraMila TURF ROYALE offers nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium and sulfur on every particle in a soluble and readily available form for maximum uptake and utilization potential.
Did you know that YaraMila TURF ROYALE makes a perfect blend base?
If a blended product is desired for either controlled-release nitrogen or micronutrient components, it is suggested to use a homogeneous product like YaraMila TURF ROYALE for reducing unnecessary substrates and ensuring your turf has all the nutritional elements necessary for sustaining proper heath during routine management practices and the most adverse conditions.
Contact your Yara Sales Agronomist to find a YaraMila TURF ROYALE distributor near you.
Neil Mayberry - Crop Manager, Turf & Ornamental