OMAHA (DTN) -- Retail fertilizer prices continue mixed, as has been the case for several months now, according to locations tracked by DTN for the second week of June 2019.
Five fertilizers were higher compared to last month with none up a substantial amount, which DTN considers 5% or more. MAP had an average price of $527/ton, up $1 from last month; potash $392/ton, up fractionally; urea $434/ton, up $8; UAN28 $271/ton, up $4; and UAN32 $314/ton, up $3.
Two fertilizers were slightly lower compared to last month, but again the move lower was fairly slight. DAP had an average price of $497/ton, $1 less than last month, and anhydrous $591/ton, $4 less.
In addition, one fertilizer was unchanged from the previous month. 10-34-0 had an average price of $487/ton.
On a price per pound of nitrogen basis, the average urea price was at $0.47/lb.N, anhydrous $0.36/lb.N, UAN28 $0.48/lb.N and UAN32 $0.49/lb.N.
With the extremely wet planting season this spring, many corn farmers are deciding whether to apply nitrogen. Some sidedress every year, but others may be forced into applying nitrogen because of weather-related losses.
In a post from June 12 titled, "Should you apply nitrogen in-season?," University of Minnesota Extension Specialists Dan Kaiser and Fabian Fernandez and Extension Educator Brad Carlson write there is an increased risk for nitrogen loss through denitrification as we move through June.
Denitrification is a process by which nitrate is chemically reduced and lost as a gas. Water drives this process. The nitrogen has to be in the nitrate form and the soil saturated to a point where there is little or no oxygen -- a situation in many areas across the Corn Belt.
"The potential for denitrification increases as soils warm due to increased microbial activity," the report stated. "The greatest risk for denitrification each year tends to begin in June as the summer heat sets in."
If soils are saturated and the loss potential is large enough, supplemental nitrogen may be required. There are two main options to determine if additional nitrogen is needed, according to the report.
One method is to use this supplemental nitrogen decision worksheet, which helps determine whether conditions have favored nitrogen loss using a series of three questions. This sheet can be found at https://drive.google.com/… .
Another option is to take a pre-sidedress nitrate test. The University of Minnesota Extension produced a video about the test and it can be found here https://drive.google.com/… .
"The issue with both methods is that information is lacking in how much fertilizer should be applied if either indicate sufficient loss of nitrogen," the report stated. "Trying to maximize economics should be a priority, so keeping rates reasonable is important to keep costs as low as possible.
All eight of the major fertilizers are now priced higher compared to last year. DAP is 3% higher, MAP is 4% more expensive, both potash and 10-34-0 are 11% higher, UAN28 is 12% more expensive; UAN32 is 14% higher, anhydrous is 17% more expensive and urea is 19% higher compared to last year.
DTN collects roughly 1,700 retail fertilizer bids from 310 retailer locations weekly. Not all fertilizer prices change each week. Prices are subject to change at any time.
DTN Pro Grains subscribers can find current retail fertilizer price in the DTN Fertilizer Index on the Fertilizer page under Farm Business.
Retail fertilizer charts dating back to 2010 are available in the DTN fertilizer segment. The charts included cost of N/lb., DAP, MAP, potash, urea, 10-34-0, anhydrous, UAN28 and UAN32.