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Controlled-release N fertilizers cut losses

Farmers know that nitrogen fertilizer applied as anhydrous ammonia, UAN solutions, or urea can be lost in wet weather and under other adverse conditions.

"Controlled-release nitrogen fertilizers can reduce these losses by delaying the initial release of N and providing it gradually to better match its availability with crop uptake needs," according to a DuPont Pioneer report released today. 

"Controlled-release, also called slow-release or delayed-release, N fertilizers include coated ureas, noncoated 'chemical-release' forms, and other products. The higher cost of controlled-release products generally excludes their use in cases where conventional N fertilizers can perform the same function adequately," the report said.

Such fertilizer products can be used in high-value crops, in environmentally sensitive areas, on fields that are highly susceptible to N losses, in fields with limited chances for repeat application, and with foliar applications.

"Most growers of commodity row crops who use controlled-release products likely apply most of their crops’ N needs with conventional products and only use controlled-release products to supplement their primary N fertilization program," the report said. 

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