Nitrogen Timing Matters for Corn

Green field with young corn at sunset. nitrogen timing

Growers who optimize their nitrogen fertilizer applications in #Grow24 corn with Concept AgriTek solutions see the benefits!

It’s not a secret that proper nitrogen (N) fertilizer management is critical for maximizing yield and profitability in corn and soybean production. A key aspect of N management is the timing of applications to align N availability with crop demand throughout the growing season.

Concept AgriTek, a company providing custom solutions through agronomy, biology, and chemistry, offers products that can help farmers optimize N timing in their corn and soybean fields.

Understanding N Uptake Patterns

In corn, N uptake accelerates at the V6 growth stage (6 leaf collars visible), with the crop accumulating about 25-30 lbs N/acre by this point. From V6 to V12, corn takes up 25% of its total N for the season. Another 40% is acquired between V12 and tasseling (VT). The remaining N is taken up from VT to the R3 (milk) stage.

That means, for a 200 bushel/acre corn crop, total uptake is around 200 lbs N/acre. And when we consider that approximately 140-210 lbs N/acre is needed just for grain development – one of the most critical stages in reaching yield potential – it’s easy to assign N management the attention it deserves.

Traditional N Timing Approaches and Limitations

Single pre-plant and fall applications have both availability limitations and environmental implications. Applying N in one dose increases the risk of N loss via leaching, denitrifications, and volatilization before crop uptake can occur. Fall applications present greater complications due to leaching and the balance of C:N ratios. Both scenarios require higher rates to achieve yield potential.

Split applications are the way to go, both for an operation’s bottom line and for the success of the corn crop.

Benefits of Split N Applications

Splitting N between pre-plant and sidedress or in-season timings has several advantages:

  1. Reduces loss potential by avoiding large amounts of N sitting in soil for extended periods.
  2. Allows for adjusting rates based on weather conditions and crop appearance.
  3. Provides N closer to peak demand, improving uptake efficiency.
  4. Maintains early season N status to set yield potential.

On coarse-textured soils prone to leaching, split applications show a consistent benefit. For medium- and fine-textured soils, yield impacts are less consistent but still positive overall. Splitting N between pre-plant and V12 can allow for higher yields by maintaining N deeper into grain fill.

Concept AgriTek N Solutions

Concept AgriTek has invested time, research, manhours and money into developing solutions that fit the N-application dilemma. With our proprietary technology, Nitro Tek, an advance N stabilization technology that increases N uptake while decreasing leaching and volatilization, powers many of the product solutions needed to reap the economics of well fed, N-sufficient crops.

The perfect balance of N and potassium is found in Total 10, a slow release N and K acetate that creates the perfect, top-of-the-line 10-0-10 foliar fertilizer.

NitroGuard, powered by Nitro Tek, protects your N investment by stabilizing N and K. The product encapsulates both macronutrients in carbon, which helps to reduce volatilization, leaching and tie-up in the soil profile. The carbon in NitroGuard also increases the uptake of N and K when the plant’s demands increase.

We also recognize that healthy plants and healthy soils naturally perform better with fewer inputs, that’s why our team has invested in the biology and chemistry, backed by agronomy, that farmers need. Bucha Bugs® DF and ST are perfect examples of this investment. Both products, deliver a natural consortium of beneficial soil microbes that specialize in releasing bound phosphorus, K and N. The microbes go to work as soon as they make contact with the soil to improve soil tilth, percolation, and water retention.

Translate »
Scroll to Top