Get an inside look at the secret to AdvanSix’s success in maximizing soybean yields – ammonium sulfate (AMS) application.
AdvanSix, a diversified chemistry company, is using enhanced nutrient strategies like Ammonium Sulfate (AMS) application to push more productive soybeans, and you should try it, too.
The transition to high-yielding soybeans is happening due to increased innovation in seed variety, but why stop there? Each field of soybeans has their own unique nutrition needs and addressing these needs may help soybeans reach their full potential. In order to achieve higher yields, soybeans have higher nutrient requirements. Thus, AdvanSix has been using supplemental nitrogen (N) and sulfur (S) as their secret to success.
Today’s high yielding soybeans require more N and S than ever to maximize yield potential and ensure plant health. When it comes to N, yes, it is true that these legumes naturally produce it on their own, but they only fix about 50% of what they need, which leaves the remainder to be supplemented.
Additionally, atmospheric S depositions have been decreasing in recent years, and soybeans desperately need this nutrient during their reproductive stages. Both nutrients are also subjected to leaching losses, and it is important to monitor their levels in each field.
Benefits of Using AMS on Your Soybean Plants
AMS is a well-known fertilizer that has been around for decades and is commonly used on corn. Now, AdvanSix has been using it to close the nutritional gap in soybeans and it is being applied with very favorable results.
AMS offers both ammonium and sulfate in the forms of N and S in one granule, and the fertilizer is extremely flexible in application type and timing. AMS offers an efficient and economical answer to the optimization of yield potential.
“For soybeans that are looking really good, maybe having a potential of 70 or more bushels per acre, the sulfur in AMS can help with nodulation,” says Mercedes Gearhart, Senior Agronomist from AdvanSix who works with AMS in North America. “But at the same time the additional nitrogen can help these high producing beans make up for the nitrogen that would need to come from the soil but may not be available.”
When Should You Apply AMS?
Applying AMS around planting is the recommended use, and farmers have the flexibility to apply from a couple weeks before planting up to two to three weeks after planting to still achieve significant results. According to Gearhart, first, it is important to get your beans in the ground and AMS application can go with whatever works best for each farmer’s schedule and whenever soil conditions are right.
Results of AMS Application on AdvanSix’s Soybeans
“The results of using AMS have been phenomenal. We have a trial going on in the bootheel of Missouri right now, where the University of Missouri wanted to stripe the field and it looks like the American flag,” says Jason Magan, Sales Representative from AdvanSix. “It was all done in precision, and the field is striped – one [AMS beans] is dark green, and one is light green.”
This trial is just one example of how supplemental N and S has been able to improve soybean health. These beneficial impacts are being seen in multiple regions of the country, including the Midwest, and AdvanSix encourages all farmers to give it a try themselves.
“When we use AMS, we get a much healthier plant. Early on we get more branching and just a plant that can handle stress and high yield potential, but this year the plants are really showing it in that stress scenario,” says Magan. “With the dry weather, the AMS beans seemed to close the gap quicker.”
Ultimately, soybeans treated with AMS consistently produce three to five more bushels per acre than non-AMS beans. When used at planting, the bean can take in N and S from the beginning and use it to build a stronger, healthier, higher yielding plant.
AdvanSix wants to help farmers push what they are doing on every acre. Through measurement and management of soil nutrients, farmers should only be able to continue to achieve higher yielding soybeans.