K-State soil specialist urges proper timing for applying anhydrous ammonia to farm fields

K-State Research and Extension soil specialist Dorivar Ruiz Diaz explains the best practices for applying anhydrous ammonia in a crop field to make sure that nitrogen is available for next year’s corn crop.

He explains that anhydrous ammonia should be applied when the soil temperature reaches 50 degrees Fahrenheit—ideally for an average of seven days. Applying when soil temperatures are low will allow nitrogen to stay in ammonium form longer and, thus, available when corn needs it next year.

“Other things to consider for nitrogen management in the fall…is use of nitrogen inhibitors,” he said. “These can slow down the process of nitrification and therefore keep ammonium in stable form longer, well into spring when it will be available to the crop.”