Bill Simmons, Ph.D., professor emeritus of soil and water management at the University of Illinois, reviews scenarios related to the 4Rs: right source, right rate, right timing and right place. This webinar is a great study tool for those who are taking the upcoming CCA Certification Exam.

Key Takeaways:

  • Remember the 4Rs:
    • Right source: Applying the right chemical form of nutrients is key for maximal uptake and overall benefit to the plant.
    • Right rate: Supplying crops with too little or too many nutrients at once can be detrimental to their success.
    • Right timing: Make sure to apply at the right time, when the plants will be most receptive to take in extra nutrients. Applying at the right time also ensures that fertilizer doesn’t go to waste.
      • Know the difference between nitrogen and phosphorous application timing.
    • Right place: Apply nutrients in the right place where the plants can easily access them.
  • Fertilizer applications
    • Know the recommended timing for a fall anhydrous application based on your location in Illinois.
    • Use nitrification inhibitors where needed.
    • Do not apply fertilizer during winter.
    • Split nitrogen applications to correspond with plant uptake.
    • Be aware of volatilization from manure and urea.
    • Account for the tillage method being used.
    • Hold off on applications if there is rain in the forecast.
    • Reference recent soil tests to determine fertilizer needs.
    • Consider the Pre-Sidedress Nitrate Test (PSNT) on areas receiving manure.

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