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Two products make nitrogen in manure more available to growing plants

Two products make nitrogen in manure more available to growing plants

Farmers can now find more products to make the nitrogen in manure more available to plants. This winter SFP introduced the newest product, called More Than Manure (MTM). Dow AgroSciences introduced Instinct two years ago.

Both products stabilize nitrogen in manure, which means the nitrogen will not leach into soil and water. Denitrification into the atmosphere also is minimized. As a result, more nitrogen is available to plants when they need it for growth. 

These products add to manure’s increasing importance as a fertilizer. Manure contains extra nutrients for plants and builds the organic profile of the soil.

More Than Manure

MTM increases the availability of both phosphorus and nitrogen in manure, which improves plant productivity. SFP reports that independent, third-party field tests show higher yields on corn treated with MTM-treated manure. Yields on corn fertilized with MTM-treated manure from hogs and dairy cattle averaged 14.7 bu./acre more than corn fertilized with manure.

MTM works on all types of manure and both liquid and dry manure. MTM may be added to pit or lagoon and does not need to be agitated. It also may be added to a transport tank or wagon before it is filled with manure. On dry manure or litter, MTM may be sprayed over manure within 48 hours of field application.

The product is effective in the soil from the time it is applied until harvest. SFP says that if MTM-treated manure is applied in the fall, no additional fertilizer should be needed in the spring.

MTM is nontoxic and noncorrosive. Any crop may be planted following the use of MTM-treated manure. SFP says livestock producers report MTM also reduces odor in manure pits. These reports have not been formally tested, SFP adds.

A typical application rate of MTM is 18 oz./acre, which costs $16.80/acre. SFP’s other fertilizer efficiency products include NutriSphere-N and Avail Phosphorus Fertilizer Enhancer. Contact SFP at 888/446-4769, or visit


In late 2009, Dow received final approval for Instinct, which can be added to liquid manure and urea ammonium nitrate (UAN). Dow product manager Amir Faghih explains that the nitrogen in manure and UAN is in a stable form when applied to the soil. But bacteria in soil break down nitrogen into a nitrate form, which is susceptible to movement and losses. Instinct will inhibit bacteria and keep more nitrogen available for the growing plant.

Dow recommends applying Instinct in the fall or spring with liquid manure and in the spring with liquid fertilizer or tank-mixed with herbicide or insecticide before planting. Rates are 35 oz. Instinct/acre for spring application of manure and UAN and up to 70 oz. of Instinct/acre for fall application.

Instinct comes in an encapsulated formulation that remains stable on the soil surface for 10 days until incorporated or until a ½-in. rain. Visit

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