Why product performance varies according to plant health

Sometimes products are applied to a crop at a fraction of the label rate and produce a large crop response.

In other instances, products may be applied at rates several times higher than label rates, but only produce a minimal response.

It is a common observation that products perform differently on farms in the same neighborhood.

Depending on the product we are evaluating, there can be a number of contributing factors that produce these different outcomes. The macro factors include:

  • soil physical structure,
  • soil mineral balance,
  • soil microbial populations,
  • plant health,
  • tank mix formulation
  • plant species present and stage of development,
  • climate conditions

Of these seven macro factors, the impact of pre-existing plant health on product performance is often not considered. We have observed significantly different product performance results at different stages of plant health. The healthier plants become, the fewer inputs are required, and the greater crop response is produced by those inputs.

I put together a 10-minute audio clip and diagram on Kind Harvest to describe what we are observing. You can find it here.