From hunter-gatherers through mechanization and the development of pesticides and fertilizers, agricultural revolutions have kept food on our plates and farmers in business.
With population growth, climate volatility, intensifying sustainability efforts and shrinking farmland, now is the time for bold action – a paradigm shift in the understanding of, and actions needed for optimal plant nutrition.
“We’re learned more about how plants grow in the last 20 years than the prior 100 years,” said Redox CEO Darin Moon. “One recent revelation is that there are 2,500 genes, just related to nitrogen assimilation in the plant.”
“We’ve done a good job in agriculture,” he added. “However, our scientific understanding has grown exponentially. We are on a faster, better pace of learning than ever before.
We now know better. We’ve got to start to think about the plant first, not the fertilizer first. You’ll get better at what you do, when you think about how the plant extracts nutrients, not about how the fertilizer truck spreads the nutrients.”
Education and cutting-edge plant nutrition have been hallmark characteristics at Redox Bio-Nutrients since day one, and our just-concluded MasterClass was an escalation of both.
Agronomists traveled to Redox Headquarters in Burley, Idaho, from throughout the U.S. and Japan for an immersive agronomic experience. They left inspired.
“My grandfather proposed that if you stop learning, you die,” remarked Peter Sackett of G.S. Long in Washington, who has attended four MasterClasses. “I have an uncle that’s 93 years old that attends college every day, so I put a high value to learning.”
First time attendee Darren Rozell from Texas said he gained a lot from the meetings.
“I tell the growers I work with that you don’t have to change,” he said. “You can keep farming just like your daddy or grandaddy did, I don’t care, but one thing is you’re going to be competing against the people that are changing. That’s why you really need to learn about all of this.”
An intersection of greater knowledge and need for improved plant performance are great motivators to enterprising growers. Biostimulants offer great promise, but are underutilized in the U.S. America is the world leader in food production, but accounts for a small fraction of overall use of biostimulants.
As understanding grows of the effective nutrition biostimulants provide, and they fit well into sustainability programs, the foundation has been laid for the next agricultural revolution.
“As farmers continue to witness that the practices from 10 years ago are no longer being effective today, they’re going to start welcoming the use of biostimulants,” said Jose Ramirez of Buttonwillow Warehouse Company in California. “As these biostimulants get better, more complex, and we weed away the non-efficacious ones, I believe the farmer is going to gain stronger confidence in them and is going to utilize them in their farming operation.”
Change often isn’t easy, and farmers have changed a lot over time. Moon said growers can take comfort that this new technology has proven to work over many trials and firsthand experience from a growing number of farms.
When biostimulant adoption grows in the U.S., it will be the realization of Darin Moon’s dream that began 30 years ago. Farmers, consumers, and the environment will be better for it.
“It is not OK to know better, and keep doing the same thing,” Moon said. “It is OK to take a risk, and to make a change because there’s science behind it. We need to be committed to doing the right thing, not the easy thing. That is who we are.”
Strawberries are a dominant player in Central Coast agriculture. The unbeatable combination of climate, soil, and grower know how make the Salinas, Watsonville, and Santa Maria areas a phenomenal place for berry production.
Preparations are well underway on the approximately 35,000 acres of strawberry fields for 2024. Growers are currently fumigating, laying protective plastic in fields, and will be transplanting strawberries for the next one to two months. Once these plants are in the ground, stimulating root growth to establish the plants for the upcoming season is critical to reduce transplant loss and build a solid foundation for next year’s berry production.
Redox Bionutrients has industry leading tools to get strawberry plants off to the best possible start. Redox products incorporate biostimulation plus nutrition to optimize plant growth.
Growers who incorporate Redox products see superior results vs traditional inputs. Incorporating some or all of the following products will help build a solid foundation for the season ahead:
- DermaPlex+™, applied at just 1 quart to 2 quarts per acre, delivers a boost from beneficial fungal metabolites derived from proprietary Trichoderma metabolites in the root zone.
- RootRx™ (1 quart to 2 quarts /acre) provides root growth stimulation and improves antioxidant production from select botanical extracts.
- Rootex™ (1 quart to 2 quarts/acre) is essential, as it reduces soil phosphorus tie-up with calcium; Improves phosphorus efficiency, promotes root growth, and improves root structure.
- Rx Platinum™ (2 quarts/acre) Improves soil phosphorus and potassium availability; Improves microbial diversity with short, medium, and long-chain carbon compounds.
We suggest two applications per month after planting, then repeating this nutrition every month thereafter.
Growers weathered an up and down 2023, following a barrage of storms. With a strengthening El Niño and a significant investment of time, capital, and resources, give your strawberries the best chance to flourish by adding Redox root health materials to your program.
Most turf managers are aware of the importance of potassium nutrition for turfgrass since proper levels of K in the plant are essential for its survival. However, methods of supplying K to the plant effectively and consistently can often be elusive.
The grass plant depends on osmotic regulation to survive abiotic stressors. This is the mechanism responsible for the plant’s ability to withstand hostile environmental challenges, such as low or high temperature, deficient or excessive water, as well as high salinity.
Under drought stress conditions, K regulates stomatal opening and helps plants adapt to water deficits. Under salt stress, K helps to maintain ion homeostasis and to regulate the osmotic balance. In situations where soil sodium is excessive and K is deficient, the plant will take up sodium instead of potassium. This leads to the accumulation of Na in plant cells, which is toxic.
For plants to effectively withstand the extremes of winter, a good supply of available potassium in fall is necessary for the formation and storage of sugar in cells.
K is an activator of a multitude of metabolic processes, including protein synthesis, sugar transport, nitrogen and carbon metabolism, and photosynthesis. Adequate K is essential for the proper function of metabolic processes that defend against pathogens.
Potassium is important in water utilization, hence the adage “Potassium is the poor man’s irrigation”. K is also a major key for encouraging strong cell wall development, hence a hardier plant.
Turf managers often fight symptoms of K deficiency without knowing the origin of the problem. Symptoms like chronic disease, propensity for wilting, lack of turf vigor and hardiness, may be the result of inadequate K.
In reviewing many soil tests in the Northeast, I have observed K deficiency at a surprising level. Even when there appears to be adequate K levels in standard soil tests, it is often quite deficient on paste extraction tests. This testing method reveals the levels of plant-available nutrients in the soil solution.
Addressing K deficiencies effectively during the period of demand may require new thinking. The industry standard of regularly applying a pound of potassium sulfate does not always result in sufficient K nutrition. Redox offers exceptional tools to supply K in a form the plant can readily utilize.
Redox TurfRx K+ Micro Crystals 0-31-50 provide effective K (and P) nutrition. The K coupled with proprietary soluble carbon compounds improves respiration, as well as increases antioxidant production for defense against biotic and abiotic stresses. Metabolic processes involved in signaling and the production of plant defense compounds depend on correct levels of potassium. Consistent use of TurfRx Fairway+ 1-7-12 is another excellent choice to ensure available potassium is delivered to the turf.
Clearly, potassium is a key nutrient in plant health. However, it is needed in correct balance with other essential nutrients. Again, soil testing is the most comprehensive method of managing nutrients. Paying attention to sufficiency levels only addresses part of the equation.
The relationship of potassium with other cations in the base saturation is also part of effective plant nutrition. Potassium needs to be in the correct balance with Ca, Mg, and Na on a standard soil test. Taking it a step further, the soluble cation ratio found in the paste extract test provides information on the ratio of plant-available Ca, Mg, K, and Na.
The benefits of correcting K deficiencies can result in a much healthier stand of turf, as well as a reduction of mid-day watering, facilitation of better winter survival, and the activation of effective disease defenses. Consistent application of K throughout the growing season produces stronger plants that are better able to handle environmental extremes and tolerate wear from traffic.
Starting October 1, Redox will re-enter the turf market with direct sales of an expanded and Redox-branded product line to turf retailers. Customers can reach out directly to us for questions, product information, technical questions, and orders.
The Redox TurfRx™ line includes more than a dozen products, which have been part of a successful formula for golf courses throughout the U.S. and internationally for many years. Our patented products and processes provide significant help in achieving optimum soil health, water retention, thatch reduction, nitrogen efficiency, and other key areas.
Prior to October 1, all Redox TurfRx™ orders and communications will continue to be managed by Aquatrols. Please continue to communicate with Aquatrols’ Territory Managers regarding account information and product needs until September 30.
Solid decision making is part of the bedrock of successful farming. As we enter prime harvest season for many fruit and nut crops in the San Joaquin Valley, many growers will also begin to crystalize their game plan for 2024.
When harvest wraps up, trees and vines will be depleted of energy and nutrients. Smart strategy should include rebuilding key building blocks for the next season through many strong soil and foliar application options.
Here are practical ways to get off on the best footing next year:
Build your plant’s carbohydrate reserves to put your crops in the best position for bud formation and pollination. Banx™ increases plant respiration and meets vital nutritional needs by allowing more carbohydrate production. It’s also an excellent source of potassium, phosphorus, zinc, and boron.
Humic and fulvic rich H-85™ increases microbial diversity, soil health, and increases nitrogen efficiency by 25%.
Lateral root branching is among the benefits of Rootex™ and Rootex™ Flowable, a high phosphorus fertilizer reacted with solution carbon and 8 L-amino acids.
RootRx™ is a botanical extract that stimulates root growth and metabolism.
Rx Platinum™ is another excellent choice for roots, as well as boosting microbial diversity.
Getting your trees and vines back to solid nutritional health will also better safeguard them from abiotic stress. With so much erratic weather this past year, bolstering getting your crops well-positioned for the next season is more important than ever before.
We’re used to it being hot at this time of the year, although the recent temperature spike has still been a jolt to many.
Plants feel that same jolt.
From nut orchards in the Sacramento Valley to wine grapes in Napa County or the Sacramento Delta, this is an important crop development time. Savvy growers understand that reducing abiotic stress will take away a major roadblock to fruit and nut development. Fortunately, there are ways to ease the shock on your crops, while providing superior plant nutrition at the same time.
Proven Redox Bio-Nutrient technology provides highly available nutrition, plus the benefits of biostimulant compounds to mediate seasonal stresses. Products include:
diKaP™, which benefits plant respiration and antioxidant production.
Mainstay™ Si helps with antioxidant production, as well as improving calcium and silicon nutrition.
OXYCOM® Calcium is another of our products that provides widespread benefits, including antioxidants, accelerating photosynthetic activity, and a powerful nutritional boost of calcium, potassium, phosphorus, and sulfur.
With our advanced technology, a relatively small amount of these products can make a significant difference. Growers invest so much time, energy, and resources into their crops. I want to help them ensure that a sweltering summer won’t derail all that effort.
Assess diKaP™ efficacy to improve nitrogen metabolism during hull split to reduce hull rot incidence.
diKaP™ reduced the incidence of hull rot by 3 to 6 times.
University research indicates that excess free nitrogen in almonds will lead to hull rot. Focusing on abiotic stress through improved nitrogen metabolism can lead to reduced hull rot incidence.
diKaP™ is formulated to provide efficient potassium and phosphorus. diKaP™ contains proprietary bio-active carbon compounds that improve antioxidant production and nitrogen metabolism. Improved antioxidant production and nitrogen metabolism will increase Abiotic Stress Defense.
Dr. James E. Adaskaveg, University of California, Riverside
diKaP™ was applied at 3 lbs./acre Mid-July and Early-August
- Hull Rot incidence per tree
San Joaquin Valley, CA
Summer is here, and that means rapid vegetative growth in the Pacific Northwest. Many annual crops are growing fast right now, especially early sweet corn fields.
At this point in the growing season the corn plant is rapidly growing, maximizing its nutritional need for potassium. Potassium, being the most prominent inorganic solute in the plant, plays a key role in turgor pressure, water balance, xylem sap flow, and cell extension. This makes the rapid vegetative growth phase, and the fruit setting phase of growth the highest potassium demanding growth stages. Ensuring a sufficient amount of potassium is delivered to plants is key to maintaining yield. Corn, in particular, can peak out in potassium usage at over 100lbs of K per week during the V10-V12 growth stages.
Considering how potassium plays a key role in turgor pressure, stomatal control, xylem sap flow, and nutrient transport, the addition of soluble potassium nutrition to a plant leads to increased mass flow and increased uptake of soluble nutrition. This is why I recommend applications of soluble potassium sources during times of high demand, to help the plant keep pulling from the soil solution. Spoon-feeding K during these times is a great strategy to help ensure the plant has the ability to uptake the large amounts of nutrition needed to meet the demand.
This is a situation where diKaP™ is perfect tool. Many growers use diKaP™ for its abiotic stress reduction, through increased plant respiration and antioxidant production – and for good reason, as it does a fantastic job in this capacity. In fact, benefits of minimizing stress will come into play if temperatures soar later in the growing season, as often happens. However, don’t discount diKaP™ (0-31-50) as a premium nutrition source. The solubility and plant available forms of P and K are exactly what we are looking for to help boost the plants nutritional uptake during times of high nutrient demand. To understand more about potassium’s role in growth and development of plants, read more here
The results of incorporating diKaP™ are easy to see in the field within a matter of days after application. It’s really an eye-opener for growers utilizing diKaP™ for the first time. It’s also one of the most valuable tools for a wide variety of growers that I work with, for stress reduction as well as a highly efficient form of potassium nutrition.
For growers along California’s Central Coast, this year has been an extraordinary contrast following years of long-standing drought. While the storms replenished aquifers, we are still feeling consequences from the barrage. Soggy soils and a persistent marine effect have led to several problems, including reduced acreage due to missed early plantings, increased disease pressure, a multi-week delay in crop maturity, and missed fertility applications as equipment couldn’t get into fields.
The sluggish spring has given way to summer, and I’m working with growers on several fronts to try to clear the hurdles that have been in place all year. This is a crucial time for growers to invest in their crops to help assure volume and quality – especially considering strong produce markets for many commodities and the increasing demand for quality from consumers and retailers.
Our proven strategy employs Redox technology to give plants the best environment to thrive. We’re incorporating H-85™ to improve nitrogen efficiency, as well as Rootex™ and RootRx™ to stimulate root growth and aid plant establishment.
Incorporating Mainstay™ Si and/or diKaP™ in foliar applications helps overcome the constant cloudy conditions that has hurt plant transpiration. This has led to a range of issues, including tip burn in lettuce, blackheart in celery as well as reduction in fruit quality in berries. diKaP™ fits in well with foliar sprays and soil applications, boosting plant potassium to make sure plant respiration is as efficient as possible. Adding diKaP™ and Mainstay™ Si is easy, compatible and complementary to most pesticide and fungicides and adds to efficiency of application as growers are already paying for the application for their pesticide and fungicide applications so why not add the benefits of nutrition at the same time.
Soil-applied Mainstay™ Calcium 2.0 provides a key influx of calcium, which encourage firm, good-sized berries and contributes to soil health. It is also becoming better understood how calcium not only is critical to strong cell wall development, it also is critical in the stress messaging response network in plants.
Because planting schedules have been significantly delayed and transplants have been held too long in some cases, we’re noticing some issues with increased “transplant shock”, slow establishment and premature blooms in vegetable transplants like peppers. This can lead to problems as the crop tries to set fruit before building enough canopy and lead to potential fruit quality problems due to limited canopy coverage. Excellent ways to get on an improved track include incorporating RootRx™ to foster plant establishment and DermaPlex+™ for root growth and canopy development.
Finally, we largely assume a heat spell will eventually come, and growers need to prepare for that likelihood. We will soon be looking at potassium, calcium and silicon to supplement plants to help overcome late summer heat and the strong winds that usually come with it.
This multi-faceted approach has paid dividends in several crops, both conventional and organic.
Application rates vary among the various crops we work with, but due to the ultra-efficient nature of Redox technology, the amount of our materials that are needed is a small fraction of conventional inputs. Growers often find that when incorporating Redox products in their program, their costs are reduced and quality and productivity increased.
We have had victories, where through a meticulous approach with inputs, our growers have been able to capitalize on strong markets with their vegetables and berries. When that happens, it’s a win for the vital agricultural industry and for a country dependent on productive farms.
Determine what combination of Redox Bio-Nutrients products provided the best benefit to alfalfa yield and quality.
A combination of Redox Bio-Nutrients products increased yield at the second cutting and the relative feed value compared with the untreated.
Dr. James E. Adaskaveg, University of California, Riverside
diKaP™ was applied at 3 lbs./acre Mid-July and Early-August
- Hull Rot incidence per tree
San Joaquin Valley, CA