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Growing more crops with less fertilizer

Growing more crops with less fertilizer

John Deere’s ExactRate liquid fertilizer system provides precision nutrient placement while planting

By Ryan Ridley

By utilizing John Deere’s ExactRate liquid fertilizer system, today’s modern farmer now has a more accurate and efficient method to plant their crops using less fertilizer.

ExactRate is a factory-installed, on-planter solution that delivers up to 20 percent more accurate nutrient placement when compared to a non-turn compensating system. Its row-by-row section control reduces input usage by an average of 4.3 percent.

"Multiple independent studies have shown that fertilizer applied at the time of planting provides the best opportunity for plant health, on-time maturity and increased bushels per acre," explained John Deere marketing manager, Kevin Juhl, in a release.

The system enables farmers to run up to 10 mph (16.1 km/h), utilizes closed-loop speed and rate change compensation, and has full integration into the 4600 CommandCenter™ and 4640 Universal Display.

To increase efficiencies even further in the field, John Deere recently announced new 1,000-gallon ExactRate tanks for 8RX tractors at the online 2021 Commodity Classic. This allows operators to carry 1,600-gallons of fertilizer when paired with the new 8RX tractor and planters, reducing the number of times needed to refill fertilizer tanks.

"We had an imbalance before. Our customers had seed capacity for hours of planting but fertilizer capacity for a fraction of that,” added Grant Wonderlich, solutions architect at John Deere. “We’ve worked across factories to close that gap, and knowing it makes a difference in our customers’ businesses is the best part of it all."

Designed to be paired with ExactEmerge™ and MaxEmerge™ 5e planters, this liquid fertilizer system includes row-by-row flow detection, variable-rate capabilities, and as-applied documentation.

“It’s a great pairing to go with our electric drive row units,” said Brady Alley, John Deere product manager. “You get the ability to run up to 10 miles per hour, you get curve compensation, row-by-row section control, the ability to run prescriptions and make rate adjustments from the cab, all while providing flow detection to the cab, which is going to alert the operator if they’re over or under applying while they’re moving through the field.”

The team was fortunate to connect with Alley pre-covid at the 2020 National Farm Machinery Show where he provided an overview of John Deere’s ExactRate system.

He explained that with ExactRate, farmers can make better decisions both during the season with in-cab feedback and after the season with John Deere Operation Center mapping.

“You can overlay some of your fertilizer data with you harvest data and run test plots as you move through the field,” he added.

To learn more about John Deere’s ExactRate liquid fertilizer system, check out the below video with Alley.

This article is featured in the June edition of the Precision Agriculture Digital Digest.


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