CSI Grower Grazier Newsletter – January 2009

Thanks to you, our repeat and new customers, CSI increased our sales volume again in 08. Thankfully, Ron is now on full time and a new office person, Sue Hartman, is on board.

EXCITING NEWS: Because we have several new technologies and products to introduce to you, the “agronomic message” will be integrated into the discussion of these products. We hope you have or will read our articles in the Nov. & Dec. 08 issues of AcresUSA as they are loaded with the type of info we typically include in our agronomic message.

NATURAL NITROGEN FIXATION: We all know that N prices are way too high. We also know that standard nitrogen is usually over used resulting in watery plant sap, aka low brix. That leads to the necessity of crop rescue with toxic chemicals. Then the excess N and the toxic materials end up in the ground water or food supply. Since we can’t do without N (it’s the electrolyte in the soil/plant system) it behooves us to find more natural sources of N as well as regulating the application amounts and/or finding ways for the soil and plant to produce N and uptake it as needed. Many species of Azotobacter (microbes) are identified as having this quality of being able to “fix’ N” (make available in nitrate and ammonia forms) from the Nnitrogen gas found in air.

CSI is pleased to announce that we have been granted a Master Distributor position for a large portion of the US for a new line of Azotobacter products from BioNatural™ Blooming Blossoms®.

BioNatural products are the result of the most advanced technology and have won multiple awards, including the most prestigious Gold Metal Award from the World Intellectual Property Organization for excellence in innovation. The uniqueness comes from the manufacturing process that puts the Azotobacter spores into a cyst stage that allows the product to be in liquid form with a two year shelf life. The uniqueness also comes from the fact that you can use the cyst spores in the soil and on the leaf surface to produce N on the leaf, using the sugars being produced by microbes on the leaf surface as the necessary energy source for N fixation.

BioNatural soil products combine bacteria and Azotobacter species that release P (phosphate) in the soil. We know that one of the hardest nutrients to get into a plant from the soil is P. The combination of making P available and producing N in the root zone gives us a better chance of increasing photosynthesis. BioNatural programs have resulted in increased yields on Corn of 24% to 45%, increased germination of 95-100% with N fixation in the 50-55 lbs/A range. Their products have produced 49.5% increased dry matter yield in Wheat, 41% increases in Grapes, 45% increases in Strawberries and 38% increases with Apples.

The BioNatural Blooming Blossoms line consists of three products, 2 for soil and 1 for foliar. The first product is called BioNatural NutriTech. It contains multi species of Azobacter for N fixation in both nitrate and ammonia form. N can’t be fixed without minute amounts of molybdenum so I would use some fish and seaweed as fertilizer sources with NutriTech to insure maximum N fixation. NutriTech is used after planting and emergence, when root hairs are present for absorption of released P and fixed N. The usual rate is 250 ml product (about 9 oz) in 50 gallons of water to get the spores down into the Rhizosphere (root zone) for high value crops and field crops. Use lists for a wide variety of crops are available.

The second product is called BioNatural Bioplin. It is the primary P releaser using bacteria as well as some Azotobacter species. It is used with and at the same rates asNutriTech along with the 50 gallons of water for getting into the root zone. Since both of these soil products have some overlapping function, the manufacturer suggested that growers with biological soils, those that show reasonable P availability numbers on a LaMotte test, could just use the NutiTech. My first thought would be that most of you aren’t where you really want to be yet with available P, so why not introduce both sets of needed micro-organisms to your soil at least once.

The third product is BioNatural NutriFoliar. I am most excited about this one as it offers a chance to correct a “flaw” in the nitrogen cycle. If you look at all the test data on soil nitrogen throughout the season, you almost always see a major decline in N levels just when the crop is trying to fill out a head or ear. Dr. Reams taught that if you can foliar feed a crop the last 30 days, you can double your yield! So here is a chance to have Azotobacter sitting on your leaf producing N on a regular basis and allowing N to be used by the plant on a daily basis as the plant needs it. NutriFoliar is compatible with other nutrient sources such as fish, seaweed, soluble K, sugar, etc. NutriFoliar also works in the early and mid stages of growth in the same manner. The additional kicker is that the organisms in NutriFoliar produce Vitamins in the B group, Vitamin E and C. B vitamins can act as growth stimulants and E and C provide disease resistance.

The BioNatural Blooming Blossoms product line is all OMRI Listed®. The Azotobacterspore counts are over 1 billion per gram, which exceeds the minimum requirement for effectiveness by a factor of 10; and 5 to 10 billion spores/ gram are regularly achieved. The product can function in soil pHs from 4.5 to 9.0 and in temperature ranges from 32 degrees to 110 F including very low humidity.

It is my opinion that trying the BioNatural Blooming Blossoms line is very worthwhile for fruit, vegetable and berry growers, as the research reports are very impressive and the cost factors are very reasonable when using all three products at recommended rates and times. Field crop growers should try the appropriate products, using/leaving check plots.You should also see a major reduction in any disease and insect pressure. We talked to our compatriots in Australia who have had these products for a couple of years under an Australian trade name, and they spoke highly of the quality control and performance. The research and products come out of India.

We urge you to go to http://www.bloomingblossoms.com/ to review all the data. Please see our enclosed price list.

INCREASED ROOT GROWTH: One of the easiest ways to get more nutrition/energy into a plant is to increase the root depth and mass. Only new root hairs are able to effectively bring nutrients and water into the plant, as old ones soon lose their efficiency. There are many ways to increase root growth as witnessed by the side by side pictures in the color brochures you see for typical biological and enzymatic products. The results can be very impressive.

With root growth in mind, CSI will begin offering a new product called RevvUP which is our own private label. This product is a soy based soap classified as a non-ionic surfactant.

RevvUP’s mode of action is not clearly understood, but it appears to have something to do with the size of the particles being in the Nano range which is getting down towards the size used to measure individual atoms. So here we are near the Quantum range of physics. Whatever or however the plant perceives when these Nano particles enter the plant, the plant response seems to be major root growth in depth and thickness. Maybe the plant thinks that there is a shortage of moisture due to the wetting agent effect?

The research shows a typical brix increase of up to 50% within 2 days of sprayingRevvUP. Repeat spraying every 20 – 30 days kept the brix at the increased level. However, without repeat sprayings, the brix levels were still elevated for about four weeks! The original use of the product saw some disease and insect control, and subsequent research showed that productivity also increased about 9% compared to check plots. There are also field reports of very large grain heads (4 inches long with 4 rows of kernels instead of 3 inch with 3 rows). Test weights on wheat using RevvUP were at 63 to 64 lbs. On corn, the really significant thing other than yield and test weight was the non-denting of the kernels about half way back from the tip. This shows major uptake of plant nutrients, excellent carbohydrate production and higher feed value. Rice in China, Indiaand Vietnam showed an excellent response.

Recommended rate of RevvUP application is 8 oz/A in 10 – 20 gallons water (1 gal. covers 16 acres). Some growers report even better response at 9 – 12 oz/A. Best response comes with the first spray at 2nd (trifoliate) leaf stage or about 4 – 6 inches of growth on most crops. Since RevvUP is a nonionic surfactant it can be mixed with most nutritional or chemical applications that call for a nonionic surfactant. Caution: burning could occur with some applications.

Although the ingredients are all safe food additives consisting of horticultural oil, sugar and corn, the product does not meet NOP requirements. The product compiles with OSHA CFR – 1910.1200 Section (i) “Trade Secrets, Contains No Hazardous Components”. Under Current OSHA Definitions, this product contains only ingredients listed at the FDA EAFUS Database of Food Additives.

We urge you to check the website at http://www.biobased.us/. We strongly suggest you test this product out.

CONSIDERING CLAYS: CSI has become a major brokering source to Sustainable and Organic Farms for Natural/Organic mined minerals. To make our offerings more complete we have decided to offer an “old line” product from Mississippi calledFlorastim®. Louisa & I visited the site last fall on the back side of our TX trip. We have known the original owner/developer for years and now will be working with his son, Larry Strite. Florastim® is created from an ancient mineral deposit that was deprived of air/oxygen when laid down millions of years ago and is called a Bucatanna Clay. When brought to the surface it appears to be rocky shale. But amazingly, when piled up and exposed to air it starts to compost! After thorough composting the product is screened and ready for shipment in bulk, tote or 50 lb bags on pallets. Florastim® meets NOP organic standards.

Florastim® contains over 80 minerals and over 4 billion organisms per lb. It is also rich in fulvic acids. We think it offers a broad spectrum mineral and bacterial clay that compliments other specific PKS mineral deposits (like our TN BrownKS Plus andKMag) both in trace mineral availability and in microbial life. Florastim® should be applied on the surface as a top dressing on planted or open fields and should not be plowed under. Typical rates are 300 lbs per acre the first year (300 – 400 lbs on chemical soils) and 150-200 lbs the second year.

PANÁK-ITE, A SECOND CLAY: CSI now has a Unique Lacustrine (freshwater) Edible
Clay from the Southwest High Desert. These Nevada minerals come with 78 elements identified to date, mostly in trace amounts. PANÁK-ITE has organic origins as diatoms, algae and other microorganisms processed volcanic material plus microbial-formed fulvic acid that chelated the trace elements to amino acids and peptides. OMRI Listed®.

PANÁK-ITE has been used successfully in California to arrest a host of fungal and blight problems affecting citrus, grapes, strawberries and live oak trees. It helps foster good humus, improves soil texture and good tilth and boosts water retention in sandy soils. It’s used at 1000 lbs/A (750 lbs/A on Potatoes) with subsequent applications after 3 years. Trees respond well to 10 – 15 lbs applied around the drip line. It may be used in hydroponics, greenhouse, lawn and garden and golf course maintenance with great results.

NEW PHOSPHATE: CSI is mindful of the environmental impact of shipping mineral deposits great distances. Whereas we ship Tn Brn Phosphate throughout the East and Mid-West, we are now offering Soda Springs, ID prilled soft phosphate (it is not colloidal) to our more western customers and/or those who need a prilled product. OMRI Listed®.

NEW FIELD BROADCASTER: CSI is now marketing a new type of field broadcaster from GW Agriculture along with our Lovell type and Tainio models. The GW model looks like 2 pyramids placed base-to-base with the points facing up and down. They stand about 3 ft tall and are made of carbon fiber, an expensive and durable material. This field broadcaster contains one input well and covers up to 25,000 acres. Larger sizes are available.

WINTER SHOWS: Ron will have a CSI booth or attend the following shows:

American Grassfed Association Conference held at the Lexington KY Hyatt Hotel Feb 5 – 7, 2009.

Tainio Technology & Technique Conference held at Spokane, WA Feb 19 – 20, 2009.

Midwest Organic & Sustainable Ed Service – MOSES Conference held at LaCrosse, WI Feb 26 – 28, 2009.

FERTILIZER PRICES: Prices of commercial fertilizers (KMag, Ammonium Sulfate, 0-0-50) may be volatile this spring. Dealers are stuck with inventory they purchased at high July pricing. Who knows if they will be as volatile this year. Prices for Tn Brown, KS Plus, Green Sand, Humates and the rest of our products will be a lot more stable – see 2009 CSI Price List. Trucking prices have moderated, but will be checked at time of order. Please order early as our manufactures & suppliers will be very busy! NOTE: price changes will be posted to our website as time allows.

SOIL TESTING CHANGES: We no longer need a separate Humus test as the current CEC test has one as standard. Additionally, we now offer a Total Carbon test to start your carbon sequestering records.

SCHEDULE: Phil & Louisa will be out of the country from Jan 23 to April 1st. Ron and Sue will do their utmost to take care of your needs during the assumed slow period. If “Spring” comes the 1st of March, everyone is going to have fun J.

Have a Happy, Prosperous, Successful Year! Dr. Phil, Louisa, Ron & Sue