Uncover the Truths About Nitrogen Stabilisers

It’s a fact that urea fertiliser is a rich source of nitrogen that helps your crops and pasture thrive.

However, a portion of the nitrogen that you pay for could end up escaping as ammonia gas in a process known as volatilisation.

There are many myths surrounding nitrogen loss & the use of nitrogen stabilisers in Australia.

So we’re here to sort fact from fiction.

Myth #1

Loss of nitrogen from urea through ammonia volatilisation is low in Australia so there’s no need to worry.

Truth #1

Nitrogen losses are unpredictable and depend on a range of factors. On average 12% is lost from urea, but losses can easily be in excess of 30% in the wrong conditions.

Australia is no different to the rest of the world on this.

Myth #2

Any rainfall after urea application is enough to wash the urea in and protect it from loss.

Truth #2

10-15mm of rain is required within 24-48 hours of urea application to prevent loss.

This rarely happens in Australian conditions.

Myth #3

Harrowing urea will protect it from loss.

Truth #3

Research demonstrates that unless urea is completely buried below 50mm and firmly capped, losses will be similar to broadcast urea.

In damp soil harrowing may actually increase losses.

Myth #4

Using a nitrogen stabiliser is not cost effective.

Truth #4

At less than $3/ha cost the saving in nitrogen alone easily pays for the protection. In high yield years the increase in production and profitability from the extra nitrogen will be welcome.

The use of a nitrogen stabiliser can slow hydrolysis, the conversion of urea to ammonium, and can dramatically reduce losses of nitrogen to volatilisation.

It’s like a cost-effective insurance policy, so if you don’t get ideal conditions when you apply your fertiliser, your money’s not wasted. And who wants to bet on the weather?

To discover more about the truth of nitrogen stabilisers and how NEXEN® can help you, fill in the contact form below or talk to your local Koch Fertiliser Marketer.

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