Potato Fertility

STEP ONE

Planting – Start Right

For 20 years, BioGro products have been placed in-furrow. This is the most important application window for bio-products that aid in root growth, regulate set and also may help with plant stresses.

Protect the Roots with Good Microbes

Spray in-furrow, directly on the seed piece. The good microbes (happy faces) are the first ones the growing roots encounter, helping keep the bad ones (mad faces) from colonizing the roots later.

Concentration of Growth Promoting Substances

In-Furrow applications are important for concentration; spraying our program in-furrow is equal to an early water run of 18 gallons per acre! Get the most out of your starter and bio-fertilizer package and put it where the plant really needs it for early root growth and development.

roots-and-microbes


STEP TWO

Grow Roots – Increase P Uptake

At this stage, products that stimulate fine root-hair development and VAM (vesicular-arbuscular mycorrhizae) growth begin to show positive results by increasing uptake of immobile phosphorus (P).

More root-to-soil surface contact means more P for the plant. You can rarely increase P levels in the plant. The level you start at is the level you get all year, which is why it is so important to start right!

VAM increases the soil-to-root surface area for a fraction of the energy required to build a root hair. VAM helps plants grow better in moisture and heat stress.  It is a must in potato production.

Increased Soil Contact  

Phosphate is immobile and is needed early in the plants growth cycle, so the goal is to apply products that maximize the root to soil surface area by:

  1. More Roots – Aiding early root growth dramatically
  2. More Root Hairs – Aiding the growth of super fine root hairs on the roots
  3. More VAM – Increasing VAM presence on the root hairs

Root Magnification

root-magnification


STEP THREE

Pump Nutrients – Canopy Development

From 6” rosette to full row closure, the potato plant develops most of its canopy dry matter, and it takes up 60-80% of its nutrients, especially potassium (K), at very high rates.  For a 30 ton/acre yield, the plant may require up to 20 units of K per day, far more then even some of the most fertile soils can provide.


  • N

  • P

  • K

  • Ca

  • Mg

  • Others


Applying 5-10 gallons per acre of CHB Premium 6 during this rapid growth cycle provides enough humic acid colloids to increase the uptake rate of nutrients, especially potassium. Yield potential is not only limited by the amount of K present, but the ability to take up a volume of K.

  • Total Nutrient Percentages

    • N = 27.24%
    • P = 10.61%
    • K = 54.87%
    • Ca = 3.86%
    • Mg = 3.34%
    • Others = 0.08%



STEP FOUR

Get Results – Photosynthesis

You now have the ultimate factory for producing high yields and quality:

  • An optimum nutrient uptake system.
  • Nice roots and maximized the root-to-soil interface area.
  • Large amount of roots, spreading from row to row, important for water-running fertilizer.
  • Good microbes living on the roots.  These good microbes will also produce hormones that keep the roots healthy and growing during the bulking stage.

All the energy to grow roots, to grow healthy vines and to maximize the amount of starch (solids) available to the tuber, comes from photosynthesis.

Only 2% of identified fungi are parasitic to plants, so why do we try to kill everything that is growing on or near the plant roots?

Especially when it is known that there are many good microbes (PGPR and VAM) that help promote plant growth and nutrient uptake!  BioGro’s program promotes a sensible approach, although we don’t recommend eliminating fungicides; we do promote a system of starting plants with good root microbiology early in the growth cycle, when the plant’s root system is small enough to manage.  Early application and volume of bio-product is the key to success!



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