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     Improvements In Crop Nutrient Banding.

Exactrix Tool Bars Produce Higher Net Margins.

Advanced Technology Developed For Western Producers.

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Fall Banding, Spring Banding and Side Dressing of NH3, Liquids and Dry Fertilizer on the Great Plains. 

Referred  to as two pass No-tillage farming.  Corn, Soybean, Wheat, Sunflower, Cotton, Milo and Alfalfa.

Accomplished with shank application, single disc application, and dual purpose single pass seeders in shank or single disc.  


The improved margin is typically 12% or from $50 to $125 per acre more net income.  Exactrix is not about N only applications.   Exactrix improves the margin every time with balanced NPKS&Zn applications using No-tillage systems.  

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Producers that band Exactrix TAPPS and TAPPKTS separately in a two pass application of nutrients are located throughout the North American continent.  Single pass application of nutrients reduces timing options, complicates the machine, raises fertilizer costs and reduces the net margin. However, single pass applications of TAPPS crystals continue to be applicable based on farm size and the crop in production.

From northern Alberta at 58*N  to southern Texas at 30*N nutrients are applied separately to assure better timing and better location of nutrient bands. Producers band TAPPS separately with row crop, corn in production.  Winter Wheat producers prefer to apply TAPPS twice with single disc openers to get maximum yields. Large producers prefer to band nitrogen stabilized TAPPS in the fall for dark northern spring wheat production.

The reasons for banding separately from seeding are numerous. The economics are better for some producers and the options are greater.  Some producers fall band TAPPS at nutrient rates that allow either DNSW production or Corn production. The fertilizer industry needs fall banding. The fertilizer industry cannot supply high quality nutrients with superior accuracy if all the nutrients are applied at time of seeding.  The fertilizer industry must resort to a high volume, tons moved system. The high volume approach has poor accuracy using top dressed dry fertilizers and expensive liquid nitrogen top dressed fertilizer.

Thus lowest cost of production and highest quality crop results in applications using Exactrix Technology. There is no argument from the Exactrix owners, “it works”. Nutrients must have the option of being applied at the right time, at the right depth and the right chemistry at a very reasonable cost.  Nutrients are always most crop effective when application is made at 6 inch depths and the soils are moist. Dry fall soil conditions may require shank type openers and a slight reduction in efficiency of application compared to single disc application.  

1.   1.  Corn producers do not want the complication of applying full season nutrients at time of planting hybrid seed corn. Typically the planting window is so short that most producers find it difficult to slow down the planting operation for in- row starter fertilizer. The last consideration is to apply full season nutrient rates with a 90 foot corn planter. 


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Another reason to perform two passes is specialty crops and double crop systems. A No-Tillage, 20 inch row spacing planter allows double crop planting. The high speed Exactrix tool bar has banded TAPPS at 6 inch depths on 15 inch centers.  Double crop No-till production techniques require a high speed, single disc tool bar for TAPPS nutrient application into heavy residue   The high quality, Triticale residue protects the germination of the expensive Sunflower confection seed at Moscow, Kansas.  Thus double crop techniques are more successful when time and moisture are conserved with a high speed tool bar.

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Double crop sunflowers can be a money maker with proper management at Moscow, Kansas.

2. Strip Tillage results in positional availability of nutrients such as NH3, dry NPK,  liquid NPKS and micros. Thus strip tillage production of corn is a two pass operation. The 30 inch band spacing can be toxic if corn is planted on top of the bands within 30 days of application. Thus Strip Till is a preferred fall, late winter application to avoid corn root burn.  Single disc applications at 6 inch depths will not burn corn roots on 15 inch spacing.


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3. Large productive northern wheat and canola farms prefer to average out their workload by fall banding nutrients with the established work force. This allows absolute rapid seeding in the spring. Fertilizer dealers applaud the technique.
Application of TAPPS into established winter canola provides much higher nutrient efficiency. The producer can roll the dice once the stand has been well established in October and November. 

4.   Higher protein and quality of Dark Northern Spring Wheat results with TAPPS fall banding. The mobile nutrients are stabilized with crystalline TAPPS using Thio-Sul®.  In the Pacific Northwest, and now in spring wheat production areas of the Great Plains, fall banding of TAPPS and TAPPKTS for spring wheat has proven to be consistently better in wheat quality and protein. Such areas as Fisher, Minnesota and Steele, North Dakota have proven significantly better crops with fall banding on 12 inch centers. In 2014 yields were exceptionally good with proteins in 14% to 15% range with fall applied TAPPS on 12 inch centers. 



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5. Typically nutrients such as NH3 can be purchased in July at a much lower cost. Fall banding can be implemented for spring cropping with the help of the fertilizer industry. The fertilizer industry prefers to even out the work load. 

6.  Single disc openers allow nutrients to be banded after seeding or planting thus extending the fertilizer season.  Winter wheat responds well to nutrients banded into the growing crop early spring outperforming liquid streamer bar application by 15%. Goodland Kansas studies show TAPPS to be especially effective in raising winter wheat yields.

7. Producers can now band nutrients in the same window as planting without burning plant roots.  Exactrix technology of 15, 12 and 10 inch band spacing assures the nutrients are balanced at 1% CV streaming flow application. Thus it becomes economically powerful to band just in front of the planter. Exceptional crop response results are achieved with Milo and Corn utilizing 6 inch deep banding of TAPPS and TAPPKTS.
TAPPS nutrient banding is time proven the most effective way to raise high yielding dryland corn and Milo.  Pre-plant banding of TAPPS always exceeds center pivot application of nutrients.


8. Banding on 15 inch centers with Exactrix TAPPS and TAPPKTS has produced improved margins of 12% and in several cases record yields in every area of the Great Plains.  Exactrix TAPPS bands at 6 inch depths assure good sealing. Phosphate is most efficient at the 6 inch depth in Tri-Ammonium Phosphate Sulfate crystal.  High pressure, liquid streaming flow assures a uniform application. Roots prefer liquid streaming applications because they are more crop available and will not damage roots. Roots feed on an even concentration of NPKS& Zinc producing better yields.

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9.  Separate application of nutrients with high quality 1% CV Exactrix application systems allow much more effective management zones. Typically VRT application is improved since the operator has more time to pay attention to the application maps, pump rpm’s and injection pressures.  The accuracy or the Coefficient of Variation  or CV of the application improves the efficiency of the nutrients and makes VRT successful.



10. Large producers can rapidly expand their operations with Exactrix adapted and or designed single disc openers and shank type openers. Land lease opportunities can be much easier with a separate banding operation. Fall banding of new land allows the producer to free up his work load in the spring.  Scientists and producers agree that single pass works and two pass works. Each producer has a different need.

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Nutrients can also be banded into growing winter wheat with single disc openers.  High quality stands results with virtually no damage to the emerging winter wheat.  Root channels and surface residue remains effective in absorbing and holding moisture.

Two Pass No-tillage systems of winter wheat can be established in the dry fall with higher yield potential. Winter wheat can be seeded into dry soil at optimum seeding depths.  It is more important to seed the crop first in dry fall conditions. The entire crop germinates the same day it rains. The two pass system allows the single disc No-tillage applicator to locate stabilized nutrients such as TAPPS much deeper into the emerging winter wheat with virtually no crop damage.   Banding deep in dry soils is not efficient or desirable in many areas and landscapes.

Another major advantage is the single disc seeding and second trip banding leaves residue on the surface to capture moisture.

The second single disc application of stabilized nutrients is more crop effective than pre-plant banding or banding and seeding at the same time. The crop effectiveness of expensive nutrients is improved by banding into growing roots in moist soil. Thus nutrients can be safely stored in the root zone in moist soil conditions.

Shank openers are not recommended for side dressing winter wheat or spring wheat.

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On the Snake River landscape of Lewiston, Idaho, established Winter Wheat can also be fertilized in the late fall or early spring with the single disc tool bar.   TAPPS with a balance of NPK and S does add to the yield potential. The critical timing aspect requires the nutrients can be banded just as the crop breaks dormancy and machinery can be on the land.


On the Snake River, Blue Mountain Landscape at Walla, Walla, Washington.  Exactrix single disc tool bars band TAPPS at 6 inch depth into chemical fallow at Walla Walla, Washington. May and June is the period when nutrients are applied for fall wheat seedings. Seeding of fall wheat occurs in October. With a No-tillage banding technique it is possible to seed into a good moisture zone for immediate germination.

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In central Kansas winter wheat follows winter wheat. Standing stubble maintains the summer moisture to the surface. Pre-plant banding with single disc openers keeps the stubble up. The single disc seeder can generate a high quality stand due to even moisture distribution. The winter wheat seeding follows the banding in about 1 month.  Approximately 50% of the nutrients are applied pre-plant. 

The final 50% is applied into growing roots once the stand is established and the crop potential is known.  Poor weather conditions reducing crop potential allows the nutrients to be stored in the tank and not in the soil. Keeping costs in line with production potential allows greater profitability or an ability to minimize the loss.  

Further reviewed, wet conditions due to heavy snows or rains may allow more TAPPS nutrients to be applied to extract a higher yield potential of winter wheat. The final 50% investment is only made when the potential has been revealed. Typically TAPPS banded in the soil at the 6 inch level will outperform streamer bar application of solution 32-0-0 by at least 8-15%.

A 30 foot, high speed, Mustang tool bar on 15 inch centers is a good choice for typical Kansas farms with 1,500 to 5,500 acres in a rotation of Milo, Winter Wheat, Corn, Soybeans, Sunflower, and soybean. 

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Non-mobile P and K nutrients can be banded into dormant alfalfa. This allows older stands to be renovated and improved. Alfalfa can also be rotated with No-tillage using pre-plant TAPPS banding techniques with a typical No-till corn planter.  Phosphate and Potassium are twice as crop effective compared to top dressed applications of dry fertilizer. Typical materials applied are 0-52-0, 10-34-0, Fluid Grade KCL. Alfalfa is the fourth largest crop at 17.6 million acres and 11.7 billion dollars in value.

Dry fertilizer top dressing of Alfalfa also reduces stands producing poor root development. Banding Alfalfa at the 6 inch depth develops roots where fertilizer is placed allowing the plant to handle irregular watering or drought pressure.

Smith Center, KS, North Central Kansas, Banding into growing winter wheat improves profits and allows much higher flexibility in growing winter wheat.  Milo is grown in rotation with soybeans.  A 40 foot tool bar is utilized by this large 7,000 acre producer. 

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A 20 foot, 15 inch band center, three point tool bar.  Set up on 15 inch centers.

From widths of 20 feet to 61.5 feet. From 1,000 acres to 14,000 acres producers pick the tool to get the job done.  Almost always on 15 inch band spacing on the central Great Plains is the common spacing. The 12 inch band spacing is utilized in the Northern Great Plains where spring wheat is in rotation.  A 61.5 foot tool bar can band 500 to 700 acres per day in irrigated Nebraska. The producer can apply TAPPS right up to planting time.

Applying at planting time on 15 inch centers assures maximum nutrient efficiency with very low risk of leaching loss of N. Thus the application becomes better than side dress applications typically utilized in the area.  The Stabilized TAPPS assures nutrients will be supplied in the root zone. Sandy soils with low CEC can be the exception.

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At Shelton, Nebraska, TAPPS is applied right up to planting time with a 15 inch band spacing applicator.
The tool bar bands at depths to 6 inches.

At Deerfield, KS a track trailer allows liquid delivery of 4,000 gallons of NH3 and 2,600 gallons of liquid 10-34-0 and 12-0-0-26S.

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Exactrix TAPPS banded on 15 inch band centers with Mustang openers. A 61.5 foot applicator,
 18.75 foot shipping width at 13.75 feet in height.  Liquid tanks are mounted on the tractor or the trailer. 

A powerful economic TAPPS banding combination for dryland, irrigated, and double crop irrigated production.

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An April TAPPS application at the 6 inch depth into wheat stubble resulted in a good stand of irrigated corn at Deerfield, KS.

A March TAPPS application into winter wheat at Marshall, MO, at the Levee of the Missouri River.

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October TAPPS Application at 58 degrees North, Manning Alberta.  Fall banding for spring canola.

November TAPPS Application  at  Seward , Nebraska

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Low disturbance shank opener from Horsch has proven successful.  The opener tolerates rocks and handles dry conditions well.  
The fluted cutting coulter creates a progressive slot that allows the shank to penetrate easier.  Lower soil disturbance is observed.

November TAPPS application at Seneca, South Dakota.

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Horsch injection system.  Typically a cutting coulter precedes the opener.

Flexicoil Stealth opener set up for banding.
Typically no cutting coulter is used. 

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Single Pass applications are desirable for Milo production.  Wing injection is utilized on 20 inch centers.

No-tillage Milo allows maximum moisture infiltration. The proximity of the band also allows triple chelated iron micronutrients on high pH soils.   Some of most efficient rates of nutrient application are accomplished with the Deere 1990.


The Deere 1990 can band only on 10 inch or 20 inch centers. The same machine can wing inject TAPPS on 10 inch
seed row centers or 20 inch seed row centers.

The machine can be used as a pre-plant tool bar for corn production. Typically set on 10 inch band spacing.

The Deere 1990 can be set up with large opener blades to improve endurance. The blades are 5/16 x 19.1 diameter with a 1.25 inch single edge.

The opener can also be set up with polyurethane depth wheels.

A good machine with lots of possibilities. The Deere 1990 is very successful on the central Great Plains.

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The Mid Row Banding Deere 1895 with AgPro individual seed run meters.   

The single pass Deere 1895 is popular in the hillside area of the PNW.

The 1895 can also be used successfully to fall band on 20 inch centers for corn production in North Dakota.  

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Sandy soils with low CEC require side dress applications and pre-plant applications at Yuma, Colorado.

Mustang openers  require less horsepower than shank openers and will band up to 7 inches in depth without Exactrix Gyro Counterweights.


Test, Test, Test….USDA-ARS, Plot Drill at 15 feet.

Click on image to see video


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