Category Archives: Soil Service Info

Christmas 2018

With everything that has gone on this past year, we hope that you and your families can take time to enjoy the holiday season and prepare for the New Year.

2019 is going to bring new challenges to agriculture, and us at Soil Service, Inc. will be here to help you with any and all of those challenges, from our lineup of Crop Choice® starter fertilizers, spray adjuvants like Landoil®, SOIL BOOST PLUS®, and SOIL BOOST EXTREME to our new vertical tillage tool, the Rogue VT®. Contact us for questions on any of our products. We are prepared to help you overcome many of those challenges.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

John Viertel

Missouri Sales Manager

Iowa Harvest Update – Tony Gann

Harvest started out great this year. Around here we started the second week of September (which seems like an eternity ago) then the cold and rains hit. Since the rain, it has been a struggle to get the crops out, but from meeting and talking to several farmers, it seems they are happy with the corn and bean yields, just wish price was better.

We combined our corn plots last Friday, October 19, and yields were good. We do not have all our information put together yet, but the plots seemed to do very well.  

SOIL Service Inc. is going to hold a tillage/agronomy day November 13 starting at 9:30 a.m. At this event we are going to demonstrate our NEW Rogue VT® tillage tool along with some other tillage methods, then we will have a lunch and go over our plot results.

Hope to see you there.


Tony Gann

SOIL Service, Inc.

Iowa Sales Manager

Missouri Plot – John Viertel

Yesterday, we harvested the Missouri Corn Plot, and boy were we surprised! Corn was a lot better than ever could be expected, after the extremely dry summer we just experienced. The yields in this year’s plot, ranged from 194 to 220 bushels per acre.

What I was looking at in this plot, were the differences in using a complete starter program (5 gallon 3-18-18-1 + 1 pint each of 9% Zinc, 3% Calcium, and 6% Manganese per acre). Then adding 1 pint per acre of Sugar E-Boost, then 2 ounces per acre of Liquid Bacteria Concentrate & Soil Restorer.

Here are the results:

                The starter program added 10.9 bushels vs. no starter.

                The pint of Sugar E-Boost gained 3.1 more bushels when added to the starter program.

                Adding the LBC & SR gained 8.7 more bushels when combined with the starter and the SEB.

The take away: Using a complete Crop Choice Starter Program and include Sugar E-Boost, along with our Nutripathic Products, can insure that your corn crop can hold up to extreme stress and increase your bottom line.

Watch for the complete plot results on our web site: later this fall.

John Viertel, MO Sales

Aerway Info – John Viertel


These pictures were taken a few years ago, when we were having a dry spell in central Missouri. Not as dry as it has been this summer, but still dry. There is a lot of pasture in Missouri that is going to have some type of forage planted into it for fall and winter forage. Since we got some rain yesterday, 7/29/18, it makes a lot of sense to use an Aerway to incorporate the seed that is getting sown. The Aerway in the picture above was set at 0 degrees. If a 2.5 degree setting was used, and the double rolling basket harrow on it, the Aerway would do a great job getting seed to soil contact. We have done this with cover crop seed for the last few years on our farm and have good success.

Running the Aerway, instead of drilling would give the pasture ground the following advantages:

  • Opens the soil to allow future rainfall to be absorbed into the soil instead of running off
  • Allows oxygen into the root zone
  • In pasture, where cattle have been, allows the nutrients from there manure into the root zone
  • Cuts into the roots of the grass, making it grow back faster and more vigorously

We have Aerways available for purchase and/or rental in sizes from 8 feet to 30 feet. So, if you are thinking about what to do to your pasture to help ease some of your forage requirements this fall, give me a call to talk about your options.

John Viertel

Assessing Your Nitrogen Management – Derek Porter

The corn crop in central Illinois is well past pollination with kernel fill now taking place. I love the period from tassel time to grain fill because the corn crop is telling us quite a bit about how well our fertility program is working, particularly as it pertains to nitrogen. Nitrogen management should almost always be at the forefront of everyone’s mind when growing corn because it’s usually the most costly and volatile nutrient that we apply. An excellent way to assess how well your nitrogen program is working for you is to go out in your field at pollination to 2-weeks after pollination and count the number of nitrogen deficient leaves. Nitrogen deficient leaves will start at the bottom of the plant and form a v-shape starting at the tip of the leaf and move down the mid rib. For every leaf that shows a nitrogen deficiency you can figure your about 10 units of nitrogen short. So, for example if your corn plants are showing an average of 3 leaves with a nitrogen deficiency, that equates to about 30 lbs of nitrogen short in the soil. The question then becomes did we apply enough nitrogen, or did we suffer a loss of nitrogen from leaching or denitrification? Unless we pull some nitrate and ammonia analysis from the field, this is a tough question to answer.

I will make note that the growers that split apply nitrogen seem to be showing less nitrogen deficiency post pollination than the growers that applied all their nitrogen up front regardless if a stabilizer was used or not. A good rule of thumb to follow when figuring how much nitrogen to apply at one time is for every unit of CEC, the soil will hold 10 lbs of nitrogen. If your soil has a CEC of 15, it should be able to hold 150 lbs of nitrogen at any one time. When assessing corn on corn, the amount of residue needs to be considered. High amounts of corn residue that’s high in carbon can cause nitrogen to be tied up in the soil by the microbes that are breaking down the corn stalk residue. One grower that I spoke with 2 weeks ago has a continuous corn on corn field that is exhibiting severe nitrogen deficiency particularly where the previous years corn residue is the heaviest. This grower uses minimal tillage, so he is leaving quite a bit of crop residue on the surface after harvest. In cases like this, I’m a big believer in broadcasting nitrogen such stabilized urea or UAN to help offset the amount of nitrogen that’s being tied up by the residues. This grower applied anhydrous ammonia as his main form of nitrogen which put most of his nitrogen below ground. Some of this nitrogen needed to be placed towards the surface to help feed the biology and it would have benefited to have some sulfur, sugar, biologicals, and some soluble calcium to further aid in the residue breakdown and help stabilize the nitrogen. At Soil Service we have our Nutrient Recycling Program (NRP) that has shown to work awesome in the fall and early spring to help manage crop residue. Our NRP program used in conjunction with some surface applied nitrogen also works well for managing cover crop residues.

For more information and ways to help manage your nitrogen program, give us a call and we will be more than happy to help.



       High Amount of corn residue can tie up nitrogen making it unavailable to the plant

Derek Porter CCA

Sales Manager Central Illinois