Sustainability for 2016 and Beyond
By: Jeff Crissinger, Account Manager/Sales & Marketing Director

NuWay Cooperative has stepped forward to promote SUSTAIN, a United Suppliers initiative meant to support highly productive and sustainable agricultural practices.

SUSTAIN operates under the already established 4R Nutrient Stewardship framework that promotes using the Right Fertilizer Source at the Right Rate, applied at the Right Time and in the Right Place. To help us accomplish some of our goals within SUSTAIN, NuWay Cooperative will implement some new application methods and techniques. Two of these new tools are discussed here.

360 Y-Drop

This tool has been around for a couple of years, but 2016 will be NuWay Cooperative’s first experience with it. Installed on a high clearance sprayer, the 360 Y-Drop is made for later-season applications of nitrogen and other liquid nutrients like sulfur, zinc, phosphorous, and potassium. Targeted growth stages would be V8 through tassel for corn, and R1-R3 for soybeans. As we try for higher yields, we need to match nutrients and nutrient applications to the later-season uptake needs that our crops have, in order to keep nutrients more readily available to the plant. The 360 Y-Drop is designed to apply nutrients right at the base of the plants, so that the nutrients interact with root systems quickly, thus increasing our nutrient use efficiency and supplying required nutrients at a time of high crop demand.

360 Undercover

With that same sprayer, we also intend to apply insecticides, fungicides, and foliar nutrients like nitrogen, zinc, and boron using another tool called the 360 Undercover. In the past, we have used airplanes to apply many of these crop protection and crop health products, but that application method is top down, using low gallons per acre applied at high speeds. This aerial application method doesn’t penetrate the canopy well, and limits our plant coverage, often resulting in decreased product performance. The 360 Undercover is a four-nozzle system that is positioned below the crop canopy - at ear-leaf height in corn, for example. The 360 Undercover would allow applications in both corn and soybeans from the mid-canopy level up, with the goal of getting much better plant coverage when using these foliar products. Coverage is key. The four-nozzle system sprays in all four directions, and allows us to use much higher rates of water than we can with an airplane, helping us to achieve maximum coverage.

NuWay Cooperative’s aim in offering tools like Y-Drop and Undercover is to gain efficiency and be more effective with every product we apply to your field, with the goal of increasing your overall productivity and profitability in a sustainable way.

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