/19 March 2022

Corn feeding

Corn is used in animal husbandry (as a high-energy feed), in the food industry, and even for the production of biofuels as this crop has no alternative in terms of versatility.

Due to the biological characteristics of growth and development of the crop, corn requires special attention to the planning of the fertilizer system. In the initial stages of organogenesis, corn is characterised by very slow growth rates. In addition, it should be borne in mind that the abiotic stress influences plants after the application of soil or insurance herbicide.

The underdeveloped root system of young plants is not able to provide a sufficient level of nutrient absorption, in addition, the main fertilizer applied for plowing is not yet available, and the young corn plant is unable to get full nutrients from fertilizers applied during sowing. Lack of nutrients in the period from emergence up to 7-9 leaves is quite critical, because during this period the stem, root system and generative organs are formed, which contribute to the future harvest the future harvest. Carrying out effective foliar feeding during this period is an extremely important measure to obtain a high level of yield with decent grain quality.
Intensive growth and consumption of nutrients by crops begins from the phase of 7-9 leaves (BBCH 17-19), reaching a maximum by the time of ejection of the panicle. During this period, corn can absorb nutrients from deep soil layers up to 1.2-1.5m, using fertilizers that were applied in the fall.

For the formation of 1 ton of corn grain (with the appropriate amount of by-products), 24-30 kg of nitrogen, 10-12 kg of phosphorus, 25-30 kg of potassium, 6-10 kg of magnesium and calcium are used. In the absence of nitrogen, dwarf plants with small light green leaves are formed. Maize absorbs the maximum amount of nitrogen during flowering and grain formation. The culture is in dire need of phosphorus in the early stages of growth. In its absence, the leaves acquire anthocyanin color, delayed phases of flowering and ripening. If the crop lacks enough potassium, the young plants slow down their growth, their leaves become first yellowish-green at the edges, and then yellow. The tops and edges of the leaves dry up, as if from burns (the so-called “marginal burn”, the main symptom of potassium deficiency in the plant’s body). Calcium increases resistance to lodging and stem rotting it is also important for the formation of cobs.
Corn plants are not able to form a high grain yield without enough trace elements. During the growing season they need up to 800 g / ha of manganese, 350–400 g / ha of zinc, 70 g / ha of boron, 50–60 g / ha of copper. This crop is extremely sensitive to zinc deficiency, moderately sensitive to boron and copper deficiency, and requires additional manganese on alkaline soils.
Zinc is involved in the synthesis of chlorophyll and vitamins B, P, C; it affects the processes of growth and development and increases resistance to adverse conditions, including frost. Bhe significant lack of zinc in plants, cobs may fail to tie. A sign of zinc deficiency are yellow stripes on young leaves on both sides of the vein.

Boron has a positive effect on cobs’ flowering and tying respiratory processes. Boron deficiency causes plant growth retardation.
Copper directly affects the increase in protein and sugar in grains; it also helps to get high yields and improves plant immunity. Copper deficiency can occur with the applying of the extra amount  of nitrogen and phosphorus and during long periods of soil and air drought.
Leading agronomists recommend to conduct  the first foliar fertilization of maize crops in the 4-6 leaf phase (BBCH 14-16). During this period, corn plants begin to forming generative organs, so the lack of nutrients at this stage can negatively affect the final yield. In this phase, the root system of plants is still underdeveloped, and cannot provide crops with nutrients from the soil. Therefore, there is a need for foliar feeding. The best option is to do it with the following fertilizers:

Urea – 10 kg / ha;
Magnesium sulfate Wonder Leaf MgS 16-32 – 5-10 kg / ha or Wonder Leaf MgS 25-50 – 3-4 kg / ha;
Complex water-soluble fertilizer Wonder Leaf Blue – 2-3 kg / ha;
Wonder Leaf Mono Zn 8 – 1 l / ha.
Wonder Leaf Wonder Micro – 2-3 l / ha.

Magnesium sulfate is added into the tank mixture to enhance photosynthetic activity and improve nitrogen uptake by plants. Water-soluble phosphorus in the most accessible form for plants, the source of which is Wonder Leaf Blue (NPK 10:54:10), promotes the development of the root system, has a direct effect on the formation of generative organs and enhances the use of nutrients from soil and fertilizers.
In the 7-9 leaf phase (BBCH 17-19), maize responds well to foliar fertilization with macro- and micro-fertilizers, and it is at this time that their use improves cob graininess and the quality of products grown. During the influence of adverse abiotic factors (drought, frost, etc.) foliar feeding is almost the only way to provide some nutrients, especially trace elements. The most effective means for this are water-soluble fertilizers for foliar fertilization Wonder Leaf, as macro-and micronutrients, contained there in an easily accessible form, and an easily accessible form and quickly penetrate the plant. Recommended tank mix:
Urea – 10 kg / ha;
Magnesium sulfate Wonder Leaf MgS 16-32 – 5-10 kg / ha or Wonder Leaf MgS 25-50 – 3-4 kg / ha;
Complex water-soluble fertilizer Wonder Leaf Yellow – 2-3 kg / ha;
Wonder Leaf Mono Zn 8 – 1 l / ha;
Wonder Leaf Mono B11 – 1 l / ha.
Wonder Leaf Wonder Micro – 2-3 l / ha.

A balanced amount of nutrients provides excellent development of plants, their root system and terrestrial organs, promotes the timely formation of reproductive organs and accelerates the maturation of grain. A sufficient amount of trace elements, including zinc, which is essential in the cultivation of corn, increases frost and drought resistance of plants, stimulates the synthesis of carbohydrates, proteins, starch in corn grain, which can increase its class, and stimulates crop immunity.
To minimize the effects of herbicide stress and the negative effects of adverse environmental factors, we recommend adding Wonder Leaf Amino 43 – 0.5-1 l / ha.to the tank mix. Due to the high content of amino acids of plant origin (43%), the preparation promotes rapid recovery of the plant body, as well as increases the absorptive capacity of crops, so they can more efficiently use nutrients from soil and fertilizers. It is worth noting that amino acids (when processed at the beginning of the flowering phase of fruits, vegetables and grapes) not only increase the fertility of pollen grains, but also prolong the life of the pistil, which significantly improves pollination.

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