All fertilizers, if placed near the seed, will inhibit germination to some degree. The extent of the damage to the seedling will depend on many external factors, such as how much rain falls after sowing, the size of the seed and the salt index of the fertilizer.
Experience has shown us that Muriate of Potash placed near the seed can damage the seedling and reduce germination under dry conditions.
With the increasing need for potassium in the Western Australian broad acre farming systems, Summit fertilizers saw the need for an N:P:K fertilizer that would supply the major nutrients as well as some trace elements. And so Vigour® ,WA's first compound N:P:K was introduced. The question was, would the potash damage the seedling when incorporated into a granule.
Canola is more sensitive than wheat to fertilizer effects at germination as it is a smaller seed. Lower rates or separating fertilizer and seed is recommended.
These trials, conducted under controlled moisture conditions, show that Vigour®, with all the Muriate of Potash included in the granule, is safer to place next to the seed than a blend of a compound N:P fertilizers and Muriate of Potash.
This trial at Wongan Hills suffered severe damage from pre-sowing Trifluralin application. The treatment on the left received DAPSZC at sowing and top dressed Muriate of Potash before sowing.
The right hand side received Vigour®. Applying all the nutrients next to the seed allowed the stunted roots to pick up more potash and grow out of the problem more rapidly.
A high yielding Vigour trial at Borden proved again that Vigour® applied near the seed outperforms Muriate of Potash applied either after sowing or IBS.
Observations made by farmers and Summit's own Area Managers during 2003 indicated that under dry conditions, using Vigour® near the seed gave cereals a better start to the season and continuous improved uptake of nutrients.