Dan Davidson with DTN does a great job with is blog. If you haven’t checked it out I recommend it. His article “Mainstream or Sideline Agronomy” got me thinking.
Mainstream agronomy has become popular agronomy. Popular agronomy has us thinking that if we use the latest and greatest, then we too can achieve top yields. While many of these products do a great job, most have forgot about the basics, and are failing to reach top yields.
As the saying goes what’s old is new again. Many top growers are returning to the basics. Since no one has the patent on improving soil organic matter and bulk density, they do not get much promotion. Many sideline agronomic practices are really the basics that everyone has forgotten.
I was speaking with a farmer at a farm show; he said that he was not getting the yield his neighbors did. He was not sure why. I asked if he had done soil samples, he said yes, but they were not back. I started to explain that when working to improve fertility, there were no silver bullets, his reply was, I would be happy with a plain old lead bullet.
This is a pretty typical of most people, give me something that works fast, is cheap and solves my problem. The successful farmers know that true solutions are never easy, seldom cheap, but actually solve the problem!
In the quest to apply quick fixes, and new technology, many have forgot the basics. The top growers sited in Dan’s article have not. They start with the soil; they don’t treat it like dirt. They understand that having the right amount of air in the soil has a big impact on yield. They understand the difference between adequate levels and the right levels of pH, and nutrients. Through their own hard work (i.e. understanding the basics), and on farm testing they know what works on their soils.
Top growers know that SuperCal 98G pelletized lime and SuperCal SO4 pelletized gypsum are basic steps in improving and maintaining soil quality. Top growers demand SO4 and 98G, they demand the best. They know that taking care of basics is where the yield is made.
The Blogronomist is maintained by Craig Dick, head blogronomist and VP of Sales and Marketing. Here you will find a wide array of blog articles from Craig and expert guests on topics related to soil and crop health, farming, and so much more. If it’s not here, ask us!