Research Category: Soil Fertility

Climate Change Impacts on Minnesota Corn Production and Environmental Consequences

University of Minnesota/Tim Griffis

With past support from the Minnesota Corn Research and Promotion Council, we have significantly advanced the development of the University of Minnesota Mesocosm Facility (http://biometeorology. This facility is now allowing us to probe how climate and management decisions impact corn productivity and some of the critical environmental side effects of food production.

As of November 2, 2015, 7 of 12 mesocosms are fully functional and being used in trials. The other 5 mesocosms are being brought online following operational testing and are expected to be used in trials before the end of December 2015.

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Mineralization Potential of Agricultural Soils and Canopy Sensing Technologies to Predict Corn Nitrogen Needs after Fertilization in Minnesota

University of Minnesota/Fabián G. Fernández

This project will provide needed information to help fine-tune current fertilizer nitrogen (N) rate guidelines based on mineralization potential of different soils. In addition, this project will benefit farmers as they will know from this study whether or not in-season N applications are beneficial to supply N to the crop and under what conditions relative to more traditional practices.

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Corn Response to Nitrogen and Starter Fertilizer Using a Modified Strip Trial Design

University of Minnesota/Daniel Kaiser

Farmers typically use starter in a liquid form to increase plant growth early in the season with the intentions of increasing yields. In western Minnesota, corn growers may use starter as a way to apply nutrients in a band on calcareous soils, which have the potential to tie up nutrients. Band applications are typically thought to be superior in these cases.

The major drawback to starter fertilizer is the cost per pound of nutrient is typically greater than forms used for broadcast application,

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Nutrient Management Specialist for Agronomic Cropping Systems

University of Minnesota/Carl Rosen

Minnesota Corn Growers partnered with the University of Minnesota to hire a nutrient management specialist to provide leadership for programs dealing with environmental issues related to nutrient management of corn cropping systems. Research and educational activities for this position will emphasize the linkages between nitrogen management, water quality and economic impacts. This is a greatly needed position that will help to provide continuity and support for nutrient management programs.

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Carbon, Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Sulfur Interactions Effects on Soil Biochemical Processes and Corn Grain Yield

University of Minnesota/Paulo Pagliari and Jeffrey Strock

This research was developed to try to understand whether corn grain yields can be increased to levels beyond the state average of high yielding sites (200 bushel/per acre). There has been no research documenting the effects of different carbon management systems combined with several nitrogen, phosphorus and sulfur application rates on the rate of mineralization of plant nutrients and how this process could affect corn grain yield. The proposed study aims at understanding what factors are controlling nutrient availability at isolated locations where yield potential exceeds high-yielding site averages.

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Request for Funding of a Master’s Level Graduate Student for Study in Nutrient Management Area of Corn Production

University of Minnesota/Daniel Kaiser and John Lamb

As new technologies and issues emerge in agriculture, there is a need for qualified individuals with advanced degrees. This especially includes individuals with experience studying how nutrient management in corn interacts with issues such as water quality. The proposal requests funding for training a master’s level student in the area of nutrient management. This student will work on a research project not only focused on fertilizer management but the effect on water quality

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