Zinc Fertility for Crop Production

Zinc: the chemical and metabolic catalyst for plants

Zinc (Zn) is an essential component of enzymes involved with important crop growth and development processes. Crop requirement and uptake of Zn is measured in ounces rather than pounds per acre. However, university research has identified that field corn, sweet corn, and edible beans are crops that can be relatively sensitive to Zn deficiency and can experience yield losses even if all other nutrients are present in adequate amounts. A deficiency response may be more likely to occur when following sugar beet. Soil tests are the best way to predict the need for Zn in a fertilization program. University of Idaho and Nebraska research data supports these responses.

Factors influencing Zinc availability

High phosphorus fertility levels influence Zn availability and may be part of the reason why applying Zn with phosphate fertilizers at planting time can provide a yield response. In addition, any factor that influences root growth such as cool conditions, disease, or insect damage can also impact Zn uptake. Zn applied as a starter fertilizer is recommended to target critical need of the nutrient. There are several sources of Zn for crop production including dry or chelated liquid Zn. The chelating agent is important in regard to both product stability as well as the mix-ability of the product with other fertilizer sources. Zinc uptake by crops still comes down to a basic premise of all plant nutrition, plants do not chew…they drink. In fact, over 70% of Zn required for corn production is through diffusion in the soil solution to plant roots. See table for West Central Zinc sources.

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Redline® provides for more efficient nutrient uptake.

Redline provides nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, iron, manganese, and copper that can all be important in developing crop seedlings.

Three gallons of Redline provides more than one quart of a 9% Zinc product and can protect your Zn investment as well as other micronutrients from tie-up caused by soil properties or from locally high concentrations of phosphorus found in starter fertilizer sources.


Blue Tsunami, EBMix, Equation, Four-Score and Redline® are trademarks of West Central.