Author Archives: John Viertel

Nutrient Recycle Program – John Viertel


I have been catching up on my emails this week and I am wondering if everybody gets as many promotions for different things as I do. The one that caught my attention this morning was about a product that will break down the residue after harvest. Interesting to me, because we have been promoting, testing, and selling a lot of our Nutrient Recycling Program for the entire time that I have been with Soil Service. Even use it on our farm, especially on the field which we call “The Soil Health Study”.

What we have observed in this field (which I have written about in previous blogs) is better soil tilth, better water infiltration, less fertilizer used, less plant diseases, better yields, and an increase in Organic Matter.

What else can this program do for your operation!

First, when sprayed on you corn residue, with some 32% or 12-0-0-26, it will help speed the decomposition of that residue, and release nutrients back to the soil.

Second, that residue will be easier to manage next spring, especially if no tilling into it.

Third, residue (corn stalks) that have had all winter to break down after application, will not be as abusive to tractor and implement tires.

If planning a cover crop after harvest, and using a vertical tillage tool like our Renegade VT or Aerway, getting that little bit of soil on the residue after being treated, will speed up the decomposition, and the cover crop will sequester the nutrients to be released for the next crop.

If you are considering adding a “biological program” to your operation, contact us. We have had hands on with our program and have data to back up what we have seen.

My contact info:               jviertel@soilserviceinc.com or 573-680-6951 voice or text

Soil Service, Inc office:   info@soilserviceinc.com or 888-313-2360


John Viertel

Clean Bean Field! – John Viertel


On Tuesday, August 20th, my brother asked me to get in his pickup with him to go look at some of his soybeans. This is one of the fields where we rolled down the cereal rye with the RENDEGADE VT. It has been mentioned here in several blogs, and if you remember, it received only one post emergent herbicide application – no burn down application. Yes, the cover crop of cereal rye has done its job of weed suppression, both early and late in the season. Rain is in the forecast for the next couple of days, hope we get some, it will really help these beans.

Next week, we are going to be at the Farm Progress Show (Booth #358) in Decatur, IL and there will be two RENEGADE VT’S there. One at our booth, and one will be doing tillage demo’s in the field. Come see it in action and come by our display with any questions about using it to roll down cover crops! We will have all our products on display there and we are ready to visit with you about all of them!

Hope to see you in Decatur!

John Viertel


Soil Temps in Soybeans – John Viertel

On Saturday, July 20, 2019, I did put my Soil Thermometer in the pickup, and I was on a mission to check the soil temps in a couple fields of no till soybeans. First, this at 11 a.m. and I took the readings at a depth of about 3.5 to 4 inches. The air temperature on my truck was 90 degrees. This was a field of beans did not have a cover crop. The picture on the left, showing a temp of 80 degrees, was bare ground in a sprayer track. The picture on the right at 72 degrees, was in the middle of the 15-inch rows, under the canopy. Notice how well shaded the ground is. Plant height, just over knee high.

I then went to the field that we had rolled down the cereal rye and then no tilled the soybeans. Temperature readings were again 3.5 to 4 inches. The air temp had gone to 91 degrees on the truck. I was really expecting lower temperatures, but they were very similar. In the sprayer track, 79 degrees. Between the 15-inch rows, 75 degrees. Bean height, just above my knees, but the canopy was not shading the middles as well. Found out the two fields had been planted to different varieties of soybeans. The ones in the rolled rye did not close the canopy as quickly as the no till field.

What did I take away from this? Because the optimum soil temperature for active metabolism in most plants’ root zones is 64 degrees, striving to keep the soil temperature down is vital to having a plant that is not stressed, is able to take up moisture and nutrients more efficiently. Both the straw mulch from the rolled cereal rye and shade from the closed canopy help keep the soil cooler at the depth the temperatures were taken. The straw mulch will do the job until shading from canopy can take over.  I think I will pick a hot day this month (August) and do this again.

If you remember, that was the week that we had some very hot, humid conditions in Central Missouri. The Sunday night and early Monday morning following me being at those fields, they received about 2.5 inches of rain. Very welcomed!

John Viertel

Rolled Cereal Rye field on 7/16/19 – John Viertel

Rolled Cereal Rye field on July 16, 2019

This is a general picture of the Rolled Cereal Rye field that we rolled and planted on June 4. There were no herbicides applied before or after planting. We depended on the mat of residue to help hold down the weeds until it was sprayed on July 5, 2019. This field has a history of heavy foxtail pressure because of hay brought in from Texas during an extreme drought in the early 1950’s. Note the excellent job our herbicide program has done. Don’t think there will have to be another herbicide application to this field.

Here is that program (all per acre amounts): 24 oz. Soil Boost Plus, 32 oz. Landoil, 32 oz. Max 72 SRN, 16 oz. Sugar E-Boost, 2 gallons Foliar Opp for legumes, 36 oz. Liberty, 10 oz. Volunteer, 2.6 oz. Hero

Here is what the mat of rolled cereal rye looks like on July 16

Did not have my soil thermometer with me last Tuesday, but I am going to put it in my truck, so the next time I get by this field I can get a soil temp in this field under that mat. Then get a reading in just a no till field. The last time I did that was several years ago comparing the temperature under the straw mulch vs. in bare soil in a minimum till field. The difference was significant then. Will be interesting to see if there are the same results this year. Check back to see the results.


John Viertel, CCA


Renegade VT at work in Missouri – John Viertel

On July 18, 2019, we moved the 15-foot RENEGADE VT to Lebanon for a rental. Had some weed pressure (Marestail that round up did not kill). This field was going to take two passes to get in shape to plant, but it was doing a great job! The customer is probably going to rotary mow the other fields before working them.

A forage is to be planted after the RENEGADE VT has gotten the fields in shape, then this fall a grass mixture is to be planted for hay crops. We will keep updated on how everything looks, but the job this versatile vertical tillage tool was doing while I was there was fantastic!

We set the tines to the most aggressive 10 degree setting for the first pass. The second pass was done at 2.5 degrees.

My contact info:               jviertel@soilserviceinc.com or 573-680-6951 call or text

Soil Service, Inc office:   info@soilserviceinc.com or 888-313-2360


John Viertel