An in-furrow blend of Vitazyme, WakeUP Spring and a liquid sugar with fulvic acid called Syntose FA gave farmer/agronomist Mike Williams an extra 10 bu. of corn per acre this fall for a product cost of $6.50 per acre. It’s another test of ways to blend biologicals and biostimulants for maximum yield and constrained cost.
October 26, 2019 — On Oct. 19, Mike harvested four 8-row strips of corn, each about half an acre. His calibrated yield monitor showed an average of 220 bu. per acre at 16.7% moisture. The untreated control corn check yielded 210 bu. and was a point higher in moisture. Net gain per acre over product cost at $3.70 cash corn: $30. The four strips showed individual yields of 215, 221, 221, 223 bushels. Very uniform.
Mike farms in Pocahontas County, IA and also serves as a sales agronomist for Gold Eagle Co-op in Goldfield, IA. He puts in extra effort each season to test “bio” combinations for cost-effectiveness. He planted this test field April 26 — between rains. Mike says, “I was disappointed in my yield. Early heavy rains took a toll, and the corn died early which cost the top-end yield.”
Mike was one of the early experimenters with Biodyne USA biologicals, which include a fall residue digester called “Meltdown” and other flavors of residue munching blends shown on Biodyne’s product page at this link.
Some of the innovative growers we work with see promise in a four-way in-furrow blend including:
1. Vitazyme, the well-proven biostimulant for all crops, made by Vital Earth Resources in Texas. This link takes you to a listing of more than 20 years of field trials with Vitazyme. If you bring up the corn trials, you’ll see some of the trials where we’ve cooperated with the Vital Earth head of research, Paul Syltie.
2. A source of energy for live microbials placed in-furrow such as sugars, humic acid, fulvic acid or other humate products. In Mike’s case the sugar is one sold by Conklin called Syntose FA. Renewable Farming has long recommended a sugar source in-furrow. Mike Williams likes it — “cheap and effective.”
3. A microbial mix such as Biodyne’s Environoc 401 for spring application in-furrow. Biodyne has also come up with a post-plant streaming biological, Biocast, which looks promising. It’s a partial substitute for fall application of a residue digester.
4. WakeUP Spring is included to serve as surfactant, penetrant and carrier which accelerates product movement through soil and into emerging roots. We’ve tested it for a decade on a wide range of crops from corn to citrus.
Of course, there are seed treatments and other biological boosters too, such as AgriEnergy’s always-reliable SP-1. Today’s avalanche of “bio” products is such a wide range — we can hardly imagine how a grower puts priorities on them! But with cheap corn, going with tested and trusted combinations is typically most farmers’ choice.