Sponsored by OMEX Agriculture Ltd OMEX Agriculture Ltd

Crop nutrition plays a vital role

Crop nutrition is set to play an increasingly important role in grower's armoury, as more and more synthetics are being phased out due to regulation and concerns over residues in edible crops.

Changes in varieties and cultivars means growers need to constantly re-assess each crop’s individual nutrient requirement, not just at the start of the season, but as the crop moves through growth stages.

With this in mind, OMEX Horticulture has worked to develop a range of total crop nutrition packages, bespoke to each grower and crop. OMEX Horticulture, part of OMEX Agriculture established in 1976, offers a complete package of tailor-made nutrition products and services to the ornamental, soft fruit and glasshouse salad sectors.

Analysis plays a key part in the crop nutrition process and identifies where there may be an issue that needs correcting. As the demand to analyse crops at crucial stages in a timely manner rises, OMEX offer SAP analysis for fast, in depth, results. Whereas conventional tissue testing reports the level of nutrients in a sample, including those locked up and unavailable for growth in cell walls and storage cells, SAP analysis measures only the actual level of crop nutrients available for plant growth.

As Spring approaches it is vital that crops are analysed, monitored and are given a helping hand via crop nutrition to help ensure maximum yield potential and plant health.

OMEX highlights their key products for this year:

Zynergy

Zynergy is OMEX’s brand new product you may have heard about this year. With a unique complex of copper and zinc, Zynergy is taking the industry by storm. This specially formulated combination of highly available copper and zinc is designed to form a key part of an integrated crop management programme to boost crop health and maximise yield potential.

Zynergy is used to correct nutrient deficiency and to improve plant health and tolerance of abiotic stress. It can be used on a wide range of crops including soft and top fruit, protected edibles, lettuce & leafy salads, and vines.

The OMEX research and development team assisted by university researchers and independent trials organisations have identified the Zynergy formulation as an effective additive to crop protection programmes.

Allan Clark of Woodbank Farm used Zynergy for the first time last year. The grower commented:

"Zynergy reduced the instance of powdery mildew amongst other issues on our strawberries. We’ll be using Zynergy again as it’s doing a great job of keeping the crop clean"

The function of Zinc in Zynergy is involved in the formation and activation of hormones that regulate root development, water uptake, flowering and fruit set. In addition, zinc plays a major role in the structure and function of the integumentary system, affecting skin elasticity, wound healing and disease suppression.

The function of Copper in Zynergy is involved in photosynthesis and the binding of cells that support plant structure, affecting stem strength and the development of new shoot and root tissue. Copper is also involved in the activation of some enzyme systems related to protein, carbohydrate and nitrogen metabolism. In addition, copper forms part of the phenolic compounds used by plants to suppress infection.

CalMax Ultra

CalMax Ultra is an inorganic suspension containing calcium and a balanced ratio of nitrogen, magnesium and micronutrients, formulated with AXM to significantly improve calcium uptake. AXM acts as a ‘pump primer’ to ensure calcium is effectively transported into plant cells even during periods of low metabolic activity. In turn the increased leaf and fruit calcium allows for longer storage life and less risk of physical damage as well as a greater resilience to physiological breakdown. CalMax Ultra is chloride free, making it an ideal foliar calcium source.

The product can be used on most Horticultural crops including protected edibles, soft fruit and tree fruit.

Calcium is a primary constituent of all cell walls and membranes. Restrictions in the availability of calcium will adversely affect cell structure and function. Calcium deficiency is the major cause of quality disorders including bitter pit in apples, fruit splitting and cracking, tip burn in lettuce and blossom end rot in tomatoes. Transportation of calcium is primarily in the xylem vessels of plants and is thus related to the transpiration rate. Foliar applications of calcium are a common way of supplying extra calcium to prevent deficiency symptoms, however, all too often they prove to be ineffective despite relatively high rates of application.


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