If you plan to make spring nitrogen (N) applications, there are several factors to keep in mind.
There is the potential for seedling injury when anhydrous is applied just ahead of planting.
When anhydrous ammonia leaves the knives of the toolbar, it expands from the point of injection in all directions 2 ½ to 3 inches, leaving a 5- to 6-inch cylinder of N (expansion can be greater in dry or coarse soils). Free ammonia in this band can damage or "burn" seeds and/or roots by removing water from the plant tissue. Separating the ammonia from the seed/seedling by either time or distance reduces this risk of injury. A good rule of thumb: wait to plant at least 3 to 5 days after an ammonia application.
An additional waiting period may be beneficial if the following conditions occur:
Consider Additional Steps
There are additional steps growers can take to help ensure that adequate levels of N will be available for maximum crop yield. These include:
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