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Best Bets for Boron in Bulk Blending

:: Saturday, June 10, 2017 :: Posted By Fabiano Silvestrin
Determining the correct blend of nutrients for your crops is vital. Just as important is ensuring the best application of those nutrients to your crops and soil. Several options exist for applying boron to correct a deficiency. One of the most common methods is broadcast or banded application of a bulk blended nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium (NPK) fertilizer to the soil. If you are applying a bulk blend directly to soil, it’s important to follow a few best practices—and know that the boron product you are using is formulated for your specific application method.

For bulk blending applications, the boron supplement is usually added into a mix of nutrients that can be custom-formulated for the needs of the crop. There are several good reasons for this practice:
  • Because boron is a micronutrient, it is typically needed in small amounts. A refined product such as Granubor® 2, which contains 14.3% boron, is difficult to apply by hand in the limited recommended rates.
  • For each application, growers can save costs by preparing only the required amount of a bulk blend. 
  • Combining boron with other fertilizers also reduces overall application costs; growers perform the application once rather than repeating the process multiple times for multiple products. 

Refined Boron: Uniformity Matters

When applying a bulk blend, it’s important that the ratio of nutrients remain consistent across the entire field. If nutrients aren’t mixed properly—or if they contain granules that tend to settle, clump, or segregate during handling—the application of the blend will not be uniform. 

For example, unrefined mineral borates tend to be crushed or ground, resulting in a variety of particle sizes, from substantial chunks to powder. The product will not distribute evenly in a bulk blend; chunks may settle to the bottom of a hopper or bin, and particles may clump together. 

Best practice recommends that growers look for a high-quality boron source with uniform particle size that closely matches the particle size and density of other NPK components. 

Granubor 2 is specially formulated and is ideally suited for use in bulk blends. Granubor 2’s unique refinement process ensures that the boron granules are uniform in both size and density. In addition, the granules are coated to prevent crushing, crumbling, or clumping, so particles flow freely, and distribute evenly and remain balanced throughout a mixture. 

Be sure to consult with your local agronomist or soil specialist about what application method is best for your farm based on your crops, soil, and season to ensure you are giving your crops the best chance to thrive. 

Rio Tinto Borates is a global leader in the supply and science of borates - naturally-occurring minerals containing boron and other elements. Refined borates are essential nutrients for crops. We are 1,000 people serving 500 customers with over 1,700 delivery locations globally. We supply 30% of the world's need for refined borates from our world-class mine in Boron, California, about 100 miles east of Los Angeles.  Learn more about Rio Tinto

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