One of the most rapidly changing parts of the seed industry is seed treatment. Aside from fungicide and insecticide options, there are many supplemental fertility options to add to your base treatment package.

Numerous research studies have proven over and over that treated beans outperform untreated beans, and we have seen a huge shift in the market during the past decade to treated soybeans. Now we are seeing the demand shift again to include fertility products on top of fungicide and insecticide.

Adding micronutrients to seed treatment or even in planter boxes has shown to consistently improve yields across varying environments. Table 1 provides benefits of micronutrients found in popular products for soybeans.

Most products have various combinations of the micronutrients in Table 1. Several combinations have proven to increase soybean yield by upwards of 4 bushels per acre. Combinations of zinc and molybdenum, as well as zinc, molybdenum, manganese and iron showed significant yield increases, and more vigorous root structures and field uniformity in GROWMARK’s 2020 MiFIELD trials.

Using micronutrients to choose seed treatment products

When these micronutrient products are applied via seed treatment, they strongly align with the 4R’s Principle: the right rate and the right source of fertility is applied to the right place at the right time. Precision applications of nutrients, such as seed treatments, reduce the need for over-application and increase the efficiency of the applied fertility products.

Many nutritionals on the market also come with a biostimulant in the formulation. These biostimulants can have many functions and aid in the early growth of the crop and increased efficiency of the micronutrients. The biostimulant encourages plants to germinate and find nutrients quickly. The synergistic effect of the micronutrients and the biostimulant gets the crop off to a great start and sets the stage for a successful and prosperous growing season.

The future for seed treatments show a lot of promise with micronutrients and biostimulants. FS offers products like NUTRISEED™, GENMAX and FLOTEGIC™ to help growers make these gains with their FS HiSOY® Soybeans.

Could micronutrient seed treatments help bring your operation to the next level? The FS System is proud to have agronomic experts available to help growers navigate the future of agriculture. Talk to your local FS Crop Specialist about seed treatment products to bring to you the highest profit potential and agronomic advantage for your farming operation.

Brittany Durdle serves as GROWMARK Product and Treatment Technical manager – corn and soybeans, and Jeffrey Rieck serves as GROWMARK Biological Product manager.