Rural Liquid Fertilizers For Crop Nutrition
By Varda Mehrotra*
The role of specialty fertilisers is emerging as an important – even imperative – inclusion in crop nutrition programs. Developing economies are becoming increasingly aware of their many benefits as they seek to gain maximum advantage and improve both crop quality and economic returns to agricultural production. It is by taking a holistic approach to plant nutrition that the specialty products formulated, manufactured and distributed by Rural Liquid Fertilisers (RLF) are being advanced, and significant science-based evidence supports this approach to crop nutrition.
Some universal benefits of specialty fertilisers are documented as being:
• enhanced efficiency technology
• ease of application
• reduced application costs
• increased agricultural productivity
• more efficient nutrient uptake in plants
• reduced potential for nutrient losses to the environment
• low impact with resource and labour-saving attributes
However, RLF products bring even more benefits when used as part of a scientifically researched and planned integrated fertiliser management (IFM) program. This is the edge that RLF products bring to the marketplace.
The big picture tells us that fertilisers are compounds given to plants to promote growth, and how they play a critical role in producing food and how they make crops grow faster, and bigger, so that crop production and yield can be achieved or increased. It is also a given that fertilisers are applied in all agricultural environments (arable, permanent and pasture) to supplement the nutrient elements found in the soil, and that fertilisers also play an important role in the plant’s nutrient value and what they return to the soil at harvest end.
But this is not the only story. In addition to the essential elements of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, plants also require optimal levels of micro nutrients such as zinc, copper, manganese, molybdenum, boron, magnesium, iron, cobalt and sulphur. And this is where RLF specialty liquid crop nutrition products come into their own!
Products Based on Plant Science
As a high technology developer of specialty fertilisers, RLF takes a science-based approach and places logical and targeted emphasis on maximising crop yield through the efficient use of product. This is achieved by specially engineered processes that manage the most appropriate and targeted application of nutrient for the seed, the leaf and the root. Examples of this technology are:
• the nutrient delivery system (NDS) – a formulated nutrient carrier technology that bonds nutrient elements in an acid solution to better transfer them directly into the plant through the leaf cell walls and into the cells,
• the rapid delivery system (RDS) – a formulated technology that utilises a balance of EDTA chelates and RLF nutrient carrier technology to enact rapid nutrient transfer with high efficiency into the plant through the leaf and into the cells, and
• the seed delivery system (SDS) – an RLF-developed technology that bonds with the nutrient elements to fertilise the seed through efficient and safe transport so it can be used by the seed embryo and establishing seedling from the very first day.
RLF’s technology-based product development is proven, and it is a recognised expert in the field of specialty liquid fertilisers and crop nutrition.
All products are based on plant science. And, all products are rigorously tested and trialled with laboratory and land-based evaluation trials, demonstrations and managed on-farm use.
Innovation and Technology
RLF products provide options for both general and highly specialised use, and they are equally compelling for commercial, large-scale enterprises or for small-scale, local businesses.
It formulates some of the world’s most advanced high-analysis broad-spectrum liquid fertilisers, manufactured to achieve maximum possible efficiency to give maximum potential outcomes. Most of these have very high concentrations of specialised elemental compounds that have been safely processed into a single, stable, saturated solution.
By achieving success with the challenging formulation and manufacturing process, it has been able to produce one of the highest concentrations of multi-nutrient solution in the world today, with all the value-adding benefits that this brings for food crops and pasture.
One of the most innovative and pleasing features of RLF liquid fertiliser products is the contribution they make to one of the major challenges facing farming and growing today – and that is the sustainability of cultivation lands through the building of increased healthy, organic matter and the making of natural soil fertility. This is achieved by the development of a larger root mass, greatly increased fine root hairs and a higher rate of root turnover caused by increased microbial activity. This plant exudate, together with the increased plant nutrient levels and root mass is returned to the soil following harvest.
These technologies all form the key principles in RLF’s commitment to sustainable soil and fertiliser practice, and this is a particular priority for the Asia region so that it can grow and deliver greater food outputs it needs to match the demand created by increased local consumption and evolving food choices.
Fertiliser Management (IFM) Story
IFM is the practice of balancing and managing the nutrient levels in all three nutrient pathways.
Dr Hooshang Nassery, RLF’s Head of Technical says “that by fertilising the seed, soil and leaf, improved crop performance can be demonstrated throughout the entire growth cycle”. He went on to say, “significant trial data supports the outcomes of greater yield, better crop health and quality, stronger plants that withstand disease and adverse climatic conditions, and increased natural soil fertility as a consequence of larger root systems that support much healthier rhizosphere”.
Achieving good responses with fertilisers is based on the premise that for all plants - outside of water, carbon dioxide and air - the only other available factor able to influence or increase yield is nutrition.
Crop nutrition is therefore an important key to unlocking yield potential and promoting plant and soil health.
Maintaining crop nutrition in a balanced and optimal way is the best means of achieving better results, and an integrated fertiliser management program offers the opportunity to do this. Without the optimal balance of all 17 elements, plants cannot achieve the best agronomic outcomes, and by understanding that there is an optimum level for each essential nutrient required by the plant, RLF has developed specialty crop nutrition products that supply those nutrients.
“With an integrated approach to fertiliser practice, RLF’s key seed priming and foliar products can increase the nutrient value and biomass of root systems in tandem with the quality of above-ground plant matter”, Dr Nassery said. “And following harvest, the plant matter reverts nutrition to the root biomass that in turn directs nutritional value back to the soil ready for the next crop”.
View to the Future
Sustainability in agriculture is more important than ever. Governments are increasingly more involved in defining strategies or setting an agenda to support better crop outcomes. And, this is the reality of RLF’s core business.
• RLF has crop nutrition products for real on-farm versatility in application to fit with farm practices.
• RLF applies laboratory-based scientific development followed by in-field evaluation in its product programs.
• RLF’s products are developed to target yield improvement performances that can be measured and quantified, such as plant size and strength, root growth and biological mass, shoot and tiller size and number, as well as overall better plant health to withstand adverse conditions or pest attack.
• RLF core technology principles are about generating high-value biomass for the future of the soil.
Underpinning all of these realities, is RLF’s endeavour to improve economic benefit and return on investment as a direct result of using RLF products, and this is the commitment millions of customers world-wide have come to rely on.
By Varda Mehrotra