This will be our fifth season of taking tissue tests with Midwest Lab in Omaha to measure the effectiveness of nutrient absorption with WakeUP Summer in the spray blend — and without it.
In the portable document file linked below, you can download this series of graphs showing the comparisons. Most of them name the foliar nutrient blends involved. There are 10 pages in the report; we suggest you print the PDF report after you download it.
In almost every instance, with each type of element, more of the nutrient is absorbed and metabolized when WakeUP Summer is used. WakeUP Summer has four roles:
1. First as a surfactant and drift reduction action. WakeUP Summer drops the “dynes” value or wetness of water from around 72 to near 30.
2. Second, Summer cleanses the waxy cuticle barrier which all plant leaves have on their outer layer. This is intended to hold water in. For just a few minutes, the colloidal micelle action of WakeUP Summer softens and lifts that barrier, without permanently damaging it. The wet spray which clear-coats the leaf surface can immediately absorb into all cells it touches.
3. Third, the ionic charges in WakeUP Summer gently attach to the nutrient elements and assist in carrying the “payload” of manganese, zinc and other elements into the metabolism of the crop.
4. Fourth, colloidal micelles of WakeUP Summer absorbed with the foliar fertilizer continue to reduce the surface tension of plant sap, reducing the pressure and energy needed to pump those nutrients through the phloem system.
In a glyphosate program, odds are high that a foliar treatment of the common trace elements will repay you well by offsetting the chelating effect of glyphosate.
At a Conklin Company field day recently, soybean grower Kip Cullers said it’s a “no-brainer” to include a pint of 6% manganese with a postmerge glyphosate spray pass. He added that the manganese tank-mixed with the glyphosate must be chelated with EDTA.
This chelating agent (ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid) bonds to metal ions strongly enough to resist chelation by glyphosate.
In a non-GMO cropping program, this kind of “remediation” to offset the glyphosate effect may not be as essential — but foliar feeding the traces can still help assure season-long crop health and less risk of deficiencies. In all cases, it’s best to monitor the crop closely, and tissue test or sap test before deficiencies show up.