The 2022 growing season was hot and dry with extreme weather events resulting in crops that were less than ideal and fewer cuttings of hay. Although it’s too late to salvage this year’s crop, you can prepare your alfalfa fields for resiliency during the 2023 hay season with biologicals.
The interesting thing about alfalfa is that it’s a deep-rooted plant that can find water deeper in the ground than other forages. It can also go dormant to wait out droughts. Biologicals can help promote the development of vigorous roots that can find that water deep underground and enhance nutrient uptake.
To build that resiliency and promote plant health in forages from the start, we recommend planting alfalfa and sweet clover seed treated with a nitrogen fixation inoculant like Nitragin® Gold.
Building even more resiliency in forages can be accomplished by adding biologicals with LCO (lipo-chitooligosaccharides) technology to input plans. LCO biologicals like Optimize® Gold and Ratchet® contain strains of bacteria that naturally enhance plant nutrition.
An inoculant like Optimize Gold contains LCO and Sinorhizobium meliloti that encourages nodule development for improved nitrogen fixation and utilizing potassium and phosphates that are locked in the soil. We see the best results when growers use Optimize Gold in conjunction with Nitragin Gold.
Ratchet is a foliar-applied LCO promoter technology that’s new to the market this year. It uses a unique signaling molecule to enhance the plant’s nutritional capabilities and improve photosynthesis. Increasing photosynthesis output drives yields and quality. Below ground, Ratchet drives root development to increase overall biomass and length to reach even more water and nutrients. Above ground, it increases sugar production and chlorophyl content for stronger, more resilient plants. Ratchet is compatible with other products, making it easy for growers to use it in a tank mix and apply all in one pass.
As water stress and drought become more common challenges for growers, biologicals offer an incredible shot at saving the next season and your profitability.
Learn more about Novozymes BioAg and our bioyield forage solutions.
About Novozymes BioAg
Novozymes® BioAg is a world leader in microbe and enzyme-based biological solutions farmers depend on to make a positive impact on the planet and their bottom line. With more than 130 years of research and development exclusively in the biological space, we strive to improve agricultural performance while preserving the planet’s resources. Our bio-innovation enables higher yields, energy-efficient production, renewable fuels and increased profitability using smart, eco-friendly technologies straight from Mother Nature.
Our dynamic portfolio of non-toxic bioyield, biocontrol and biostimulant solutions enhance soil fertility, protect crops and improve overall plant health.
Microbial inoculants and biostimulants complement traditional fertilizers. They help increase the availability of key nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium for improved crop yields and use signaling molecules to help mitigate stress.
We’re also proud to partner with companies like Bayer, Syngenta, FMC and Nexus BioAg to develop and test products for incredibly reliable performance. Novozymes conducts hundreds of real life, on-farm product performance testing trials on hundreds of acres.