Turf & Ornamental
Cob Products
Contract Manufacturing
Turf & Ornamental
Industrial Cob Products
Lab Bedding
Contract Manufacturing
Close Map

Managing Residue in Double-Cropping Systems

Posted on June 14, 2023

No matter if growers are growing corn, wheat, or soybeans, each of these crops will need nutrients to achieve their maximum yield potential. This is especially true in a double-cropping system.

One of the most cost-effective ways to provide essential nutrients to crops is through a good residue management plan. Here’s how setting up a residue management plan will allow producers to effectively use nutrients that are already available.

The Situation

After harvest, crops leave behind residue that is full of key nutrients like nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K), which are essential to plant health.

When growers provide essential nutrients to their crops, they are also not only able to boost their profits, they can also increase overall crop yields.

Research shows that a 50-bushel wheat crop leaves behind about 2 tons of residue, which means wheat can leave behind about $30 of N, P, and K per acre on your field. For corn, a 200-bushel crop leaves behind 5 tons of crop residue and provides a high nutrient value of N, P, and K left in the field. 

5 Ton of corn residue contains:

85 pounds of Nitrogen = $39.95 (28%)
20 pounds of Phosphorus = $9 (MAP)
170 pounds of Potash = $59.50 (Potash)
Source: NRCS   

When residue management practices are implemented shortly after harvest in a corn or wheat rotation with soybeans, it can increase yields by 4-5 bushels per acre the following year. Therefore, having a residue management plan not only helps growers retain more nutrients in the soil, it also helps to increase the yield of next year’s crop. 

The Problem   

Even though the residue is left out in the field and available, it does not mean that the nutrients in the residue are going to be readily available to the plants. In fact, when left alone in the field crop residue decomposes so slowly that it does not release enough nutrients into the soil to make much of a difference.  

This cuts into profits for growers because the nutrients that could be made available to the crops will be left locked up on top of the soil. When there is no residue management plan in place there is a profitability loss to the grower.   

The Solution

A good residue management plan can help to make the nutrients from crop residue readily available to crops and a great place to start with your management plant with the use of The Andersons biological solutions. The goal of any residue management plan should be to increase microbial activity in the soil and with the use of Bio Reverse, Bio Pass, and UltraMate LQ they allow producers to do just this. Each one of these products is a microbial package specifically designed to increase microbial activity in the soil and speed up the residue breakdown process and increase overall plant health.  

In a study of Bio Reverse, it showed that crops treated with Bio Reverse released ten times as many nutrients compared to the crops that were not treated.

This photo shows stalks that were not treated with Bio Reverse. To learn more about our research trials done with Bio Reverse, visit its product page.  

Implement a Residue Management Plan 

With the implementation of a good residue management plan, growers can make use of the nutrients that are given to them each year after harvest and help to not only maximize yields but profit at the same time. A great place to start a management plan is to consider using Bio Reverse, Bio Pass, or UltraMate LQ to help speed up the decomposition of crop residue.  

For more information on any of these three products or residue management from The Andersons, fill out our contact form and a member of our team will be in touch.  

Hey: market_feed - 4965