Calcium Products - Displaying items by tag: glen howell
Calcium Product 98G


We're out & about - stop by & say hi?

Stop by booth 218 at the Wisconsin Crop Management conference in the Madison, WI Alliant Energy Center and say hi to Pete!

Or, if you're at the South Dakota Ag Retail show in Sioux Falls, stop by booth 58 & say hi to Glen!

Later this month we'll be at the Iowa Power Farming Show and the Iowa Turfgrass conference — both in Des Moines, IA!


And in February, you can find us at:

The Golf Industry Show Feb. 6-7. We don't have a booth but our Brian Milam will be there to talk to customers and introduce other folks to our products' amazing impact on turf!

Agribusiness Assoc. of Iowa show on Feb. 12-13 (booth 121). Our own Craig Dick will even be speaking at 10 a.m. & 11 a.m. on Feb. 12.



Sulfur, Part 2: Application Rates & Timing

 By: Glen Howell

In Midwestern agriculture, there are primarily 4 fertilizers that are actively used for meeting sulfur nutritional needs. They are listed from highest to lowest sulfur concentration.  Also listed is their overall analysis & type of product composition:

Elemental Sulfur-90%S; (0-0-0-90S); dry product; sulfur is not in plant available form
Ammonium Thiosulfate (ATS)-26% S; (12-0-0-26S); liquid product
Ammonium Sulfate (AMS)-24% S; (21-0-0-24S); dry product
Potassium Magnesium Sulfate (langbeinite)-21% S; (0-0-21-21S-11Mg); dry product
Calcium Sulfate (SuperCal SO4; CaSO4; gypsum)-17%S; (0-0-0-17S-21Ca); dry product
Potassium Sulfate (SOP)-17% S; (0-0-50-17S); dry product

Crop need for sulfur

Crops need varying amounts of sulfur to complete their life cycle.  Much of what is needed for growth is recycled to the soil with plant residues, but there is a net loss with the crop removed. Organic matter (O.M.) in soil is a great sulfur source—each 1% contains 140# of sulfur—but it may not always be available when the crop needs it. 

Crop         Unit of Measure        # Sulfur/Unit of Measure        Yield-# Sulfur Removed                                                                 (Crop removal)

Corn (grain)        Bushel                   0.08#                               200 Bushels-16# S

Corn (silage)      Ton                        1.1#                                 30 Ton-33# S

Soybean (grain)  Bushel                   0.18#                                60 Bushels-10.8# S

Alfalfa/Forages  Ton                        5.4#**                   &nb


Sulfur-Part 1: Solubility & Leaching

 By: Glen Howell


I have received several calls this week on sulfur.  They focused on solubility/leaching potential, application rates, application timing, and product comparisons.  We will discuss solubility & leaching potential in this part.

The solubility of any fertilizer or soil amendment is critical to a successful outcome.  In order for plants to utilize a nutrient, it must be in soil solution (the water surrounding the soil particles).  Until a nutrient dissolves & goes into this solution, it is unavailable for plant growth.  This is why applying fertilizer does not immediately result in improved plant growth, but takes time (usually days) for the material to dissolve, go into soil solution, & be taken up by plant roots, before 

Corn showing sulfur deficiency

resulting crop growth occurs.  Leaching can happen if a product is too soluble, & unfavorable weather conditions occur.  This is typically associated with heavy rains, especially during the growing season, but is possible at other times also.  We are most often concerned about leaching nitrogen, but sulfur can leach almost as easily.  

Soil particles have both positive (+) and negative (-) charges on their exchange sites.  Younger, unweathered soils, such as those found in the Midwest, have a prevalence of positive sites, referred to as cation exchange capacity (CEC), while older, highly weathered soils have more anion exchange capacity (AEC).  Opposite charges are attracted to each other, so Midwestern soils with good CEC values, can hold significant quantities of beneficial nutrients such as Calcium (Ca++), Magnesium (Mg++), Potassium (K+) & the ammonium form of Nitrogen (NH4+). Unfortunately, nitrogen does not stay in the ammonium form for long, & instead changes to the nitrate form (NO3-), which is why nitrate leaching is such a huge concern (; Sulfur must be in the sulfate form (SO4--) for plants to use it, so conditions favorable for nitrate leaching will also favor the loss of sulfates.

In the next part, we will look at application rates for sulfur fertilizers.

Other references:


Glen Howell is a contributing writer to Yield Starts Here, a blog for farmers, focusing on increasing yield and profitability by focusing on the soil.  His other interests include severe weather & old farm tractor


Could soil help us in fighting infection?

Could soil help us in fighting infection?

Historical anecdotes of the red soils from the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan tell of people using the soils to treat skin infections and diaper rash. A multinational group of researchers suggest the healing power may be due to antibiotic-producing bacteria they have found living in the soil. This discovery may ultimately lead to new antibiotic treatments against harmful pathogens such as Staphylococcus aureus. The researchers report their findings in the May 2008 issue of the journal Applied and Environmental Microbiology. Link:

A reasons why soil quality, while hard to measure, is of huge importance.



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!


Please Welcome our Newest Salesman

We are pleased to announce the hiring of Glen Howell. Glen will be working with Jim La Velle over the next few weeks to take over Jim's territory of Eastern Iowa, Wisconsin, Minnesota and North Dakota. Jim will be taking on a bigger management role in Gilmore City.

Glen has spent a number of years in retail agronomy management, sold and serviced GPS equipment, farmed and served in the Iowa Army National Guard. We know Glen's background in leadership, sales and agronomy will be an asset to Calcium Products and our dealers.

Welcome aboard Glen!



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!


A great soil amendment conference!

logo1This week we hosted a soil amendment conference for our dealers and about 75 of them were able to attend. We had a wonderful cast of speakers and we'd love to share the presentations with those of you who weren't able to make it!

Check out this page to download their presentations. We'll have video of each talk coming soon!

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Maintained by our team of experts, we have a wide array of blog articles from our experts and guests on topics related to soil and crop health, farming and growing tips, and so much more. If it’s not here, ask us!

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