Soil Cold and Wet?

Posted in: Farming     

You’ll likely have Phosphorous challenges this spring.

Advances in formulating technology with Black LabelTM allows flexibility to address P shortages at or after seeding.

When soils are cool and wet Phosphorous (P) nutrition is a challenge. Root growth and P release from soils is delayed so plants rely heavily on applied P fertilizer. The problem is P fertilizer is notoriously inefficient - in the year of application most of it reacts with Calcium and forms an insoluble precipitate. It’s also very immobile; typically it needs to be placed in the soil and near the roots. To make matters worse today’s no-till and low disturbance seeding practices are changing what researchers refer to as the ‘positional availability’ of P, or the proximity of a phosphorous fertilizer granule or droplet to the plant’s roots. Some are referring to this as nutrient stratification. This term refers to concentrating the level of immobile nutrients right where they’re being applied, in the top inch or two of soil. Roots below this layer don’t get much of a chance to access these nutrients.

New Technology

06 0711 Soils Cold And Wet

UAP Canada began evaluating a patented and proprietary fertilizer technology called Black Label a few years ago, passed on by its sister company in the U.S., Loveland Products. “It was certainly something new, it had some lofty claims around it,” says Eric Gregory, Product Manager at UAP Canada responsible for Black Label in Western Canada. Claims being made in the U.S. focussed on two things – increased mobility and reduced ‘tie-up’ in the soil. “It definitely challenged everything I knew about phosphorous” says Gregory. “However, there was some very compelling data coming out of the U.S.” Gregory is referring to work done by Dr. Hussein Ajwa, Soil Chemist with UC Davis. Ajwa has published work, done in California, with highly Calcareous soils with comparing Black Label to other Phosphorous sources like Poly (10- 34-0) and Ortho Phosphate fertilizers. The 6 week study illustrated limited mobility with Poly and Ortho Phosphate. Black Label phosphorous however moved several inches into the soil profile.

06 0711 Soils Cold And Wet 02What may surprise some was how quickly the older formulations reacted with Calcium and ‘tied-up’. “Ortho phosphate was the worst. It became unavailable almost right away, poly hung on for a little longer but in the end still suffered the same fate,” sites Gregory. Dr. Ajwa’s results however showed that the Black Label formulation was virtually still 100% plant available
after 42 days.

How, what, where?

“We’ve certainly been looking at all the different options on how to apply the product. The good news is that based on our experiences and yield results it’s very flexible, there is no wrong way,” says Gregory. Growers already using the product have learned it’s mixable with all other macronutrient liquid fertilizers as well as fully chelated micros and is completely seed seed-safe*. “In reality much of it goes down as a post-emergent. The benefit there is that because it’s mobile, rain moves it into the soil so you’re not just relying on leaf
interception like you are with all other foliar P products. Black Label also started out as a surfactant technology so you can draw your own conclusions,” Gregory adds.


For more information contact your local retailer or visit
Black Label is a trademark of Loveland Products Inc.
All other products are registered trademarks of their respective companies.
Always read and follow label directions. *Always do a jar test prior to mixing products.

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