If you are in the process of planning your summer planting schedule, you may be trying to cut costs and ask yourself; why use seed treatments? Are seed treatments an input you can reduce to save money to help your profitability? Seed treatments such as priming, pelleting, and filmcoating are some of the lowest cost inputs you can invest in that produce favorable results in the field.
Why Use Seed Treatments?
Yes, this is an added cost per acre, but by combining the two essential treatments of priming and pelleting, you will gain many benefits. The following are just a few examples of the benefits seed treatments provide:
1. Reduce Labor Costs – Covers the Cost of the Seed Treatment
According to the USDA, farm labor expenses represent roughly 17% of the total variable farm cost and as much as 40% of the cost for labor-intensive crops such as fruits, vegetables, and nursery products. Singulation at planting is improved by using a seed pellet sized for your planter which can help reduce thinning costs. In addition crop protection filmcoatings or seed disinfection can reduce the odds of having to replant a field or greenhouse tray due to fungal or insect infestations.
2. Improve Yield
For many species, seed priming has become an industry standard seed treatment that offers many benefits. Not only does seed priming help the seed’s speed of emergence, but seed priming also helps improve uniformity, canopy development, helps the seed overcome a wider temperature range for germination, and optimizes harvesting performance. In addition to lettuce, species such as cabbage, carrots, onions, parsley, tomatoes, and parsnip are highly responsive to seed priming. Also, adding other seed treatments such as pelleting and filmcoating can improve the probability of your crops success.
3. Make Things Easier
Seed comes in all shapes and sizes, changing plates on your planter and or handling small seeds is a hassle. Adding an encrustment or pellet to your seed not only makes it easier to transfer seed to your planter, but it also prevents seed from blowing in the wind and improves the way that the seed flows through your planter. Another benefit is a 13.0 size pellet may be applied to several species so that you can use the same plate for planting several different types of vegetables. Various treatment colors used to coat the seed make it easier to identify different varieties.
4. Crop Protection upon Emergence
Don’t you want to protect your crop as soon as it emerges? There are several early season insects, seed and soil-borne diseases you can avoid by either coating your seed with a crop protection product applied as a seed treatment or by disinfecting your seed before planting. Also, seed treatments minimize the environmental impact via target application to the seed vs. broadcast spraying onto the soil or seedlings.
Again there are several benefits to using seed treatments, those listed are just a few of the many ways seed treatments can help maximize your crop’s potential. The good news is that there are different conventional and organic seed treatments for each species that may be combined to meet the needs of your current growing conditions and or cultivation practices. For more information about our seed treatments, please visit our website or your preferred seed distributor.