Source: Georgia-Pacific Plant Nutrition news release

Nitamin Nfusion Steady Delivery produced significant yield increases when compared to standard urea ammonium nitrate (UAN) in single- and split-application trials conducted by the University of Nebraska.

Also, stalk tests confirmed that Nitamin Nfusion was absorbed more by the corn plant when compared to the same N content in UAN-only applications.

"If you have conditions where you might get nitrogen loss through leaching, whether it's sandy soils or heavy rainfall, then a slow-release product such as Nitamin will give you a nitrogen efficiency benefit," said Dr. Charles Shapiro, University of Nebraska soil fertility researcher. "In both years of the studies, we found that the Nitamin stayed where it was applied, so it was readily available for the corn plant."

Manufactured by Georgia-Pacific Plant Nutrition and distributed by Wilbur-Ellis Co. and others, Nitamin Nfusion Steady-Release is a liquid nitrogen fertilizer that combines the continuous release benefits of Nitamin with conventional quick-release N sources such as UAN 32 percent. The product is water soluble and contains 22 percent nitrogen, of which 94 percent is slowly available N in the form of polymer urea. Nitamin Nfusion can be blended with UAN, urea solution and liquid ammonium nitrate solutions at different ratios to provide flexible N release rates, providing growers with the ability to match N delivery with crop-specific N uptake patterns over the growing season. Custom blends can be made with certain formulations of phosphorus, potassium and micronutrients.

"The inherent flexibility of Nitamin Nfusion allows growers to factor in soil temperatures, application timing and the crop's growth cycle before determining how much slowly available N to incorporate," said John Kruse, senior research agronomist, Georgia-Pacific Plant Nutrition. "The end result is a custom-tailored crop nutrition program that optimizes nitrogen-use efficiency. Nitamin Nfusion minimizes excess N when not needed by the crop and maximizes plant-available N when most needed by the crop."

In both years of the Nebraska studies (2007 and 2008), which were conducted on farms near Norfolk, NE, Nitamin Nfusion was mixed in a 30:70 ratio (percentage N basis) with UAN 32 and compared to straight UAN 32. In the first year, some plots received all of the N (a total of 225 pounds) at planting while others received split applications at the pre-plant and planting stages. In a split application of 150 pounds pre-plant and 75 pounds side-dressed in-season, the Nitamin Nfusion field yielded 29 bu/A higher at 201 bu/A compared to the field treated with similar applications and the same rate of standard UAN.

Shapiro said the split application mirrors a typical production practice in irrigated corn grown in a sandier type of soil. "The sandy soils don't hold a lot of water, and the general practice is to split the N for production reasons and it's also more ecologically sound in reducing leaching problems," he said. "Nitamin would give a grower confidence in knowing that he can put on more N at planting or early in the season and not lose it after a rainfall."

In 2008, the trial was modified to compare the effects of knifing-in the N treatment versus a broadcast application nine days after planting. An additional postemergence N application was made through the irrigation pivot. The highest yield, at 259 bu/A, came from the Nitamin Nfusion application, 11 bu/A higher than the UAN at the same rate.

Shapiro noted that in addition to an increase in yield, the 2008 trials demonstrated increased N efficiencies with improved placement and technologies, even at lower rates of total N. For example, at 167 pounds total N, the average yield (combining broadcast and knifed-in trials) of Nitamin Nfusion was 243 bu/A, compared to 234 for UAN.

When researchers performed stalk nitrate testing