Since the beginning of Ad Terram Treatment Technologies, we have had the opportunity to speak with many experienced growers and farmers from a lot of different fields within the agriculture sector about the implementation of Optimum Biostimulants. What surprised us was the diversity in motives to integrate Optimum Biostimulants in their schedules. In this article we will describe the “6 reasons why” that we heard the most.
1. Improved Vigour
Well begun is half done. Plants that experienced a good start to the season carry an advantage that will last until storage of the end product. As we know, plants are most vulnerable to biotic and abiotic stress in the early stages of growth. Plants that mature faster experience minimum stress due to the application of Optimum Leaf, Optimum Bulb, Optimum Soil and/or Optimum Seed and so are less likely to fall behind in the early growing stages. This results in less vulnerability to biotic and abiotic stress factors as well as the Biostimulants facilitate an optimal start of the growing season for the plants.
2. Better Resilience of the Plant
Abiotic stress is the negative impact of non-living factors on living organisms (cold, heat, drought, flooding etc.). Biotic stress is stress that is caused by living organisms to other organisms (bacteria, viruses, fungi, insects, parasites etc.). This is a recuring challenge every season for farmers and growers. For example, in the Netherlands during the last years we have experienced extreme dry periods which brought a lot of difficulties. As irrigation can be very expensive, using Optimum Biostimulants is a good solution. Optimum Biostimulants improves the root system of plants, longer/deeper roots have a higher chance of reaching water. Next to that, an increased amount of so called “root hairs” appear on the roots of plants treated with an Optimum Biostimulants which results in a significantly better uptake of necessary micro nutrients from the soil.
3. Technical Improvements
Depending on the crop or plant, Optimum Biostimulants has a lot of influence on technical matters. The skin or outer layer of onions and carrots are likely to become more even, equal and/or more uniform. This makes the job of quality control much easier. Optimum Biostimulants enables the plants a higher volume of water transport, which enables the plants to take up more micronutrients as well as nitrogen and other important nutrients.
4. Yield Improvemens
Of course, a very often heard “reason why” is the improvement in yield. The increase in yield is easy to measure and therefore directly creates added value to the use of an Optimum Biostimulant. There is some room for interpretation in “yield improvement” for example with potato seeds. Two yield components of potato are tuber count per seed and tuber size and weight. Optimum Biostimulants have a positive effect on both, more uniformity in tubers as well as more higher yields in terms of weight. Important is to understand that the more the crop is in a perfect condition during the growth period the lower the improvement is this is a fundamental part of using Biostimulants.
5. Improved storability of crops
Optimum Biostimulants has a positive effect on the extent of time that crops can be stored after yield. Crops that are stored for a relatively long time tend to lose quality or become redundant during storage. Farmers and growers that use Optimum Biostimulants experience that their crops can be stored for a longer period while on the same time preserving high quality. Reason for this is that the crops are more vital due to improved cell membranes, larger vacuoles and thicker skins (e.g. onions), which enables the product to have a more efficient evaporation during storage. This results in less damage and longer storability. This way the farmers and growers have more time to wait for the perfect delivery moment while assuring the quality of their product.
6. Less use of Chemicals and Microplastics
In recent years we have become more aware of the effects of using chemicals and treatments containing microplastics and the damage it does to the health of humans, animals and the environment. Recent studies shows that Microplastics accumulate on pores in seed capsule and delay germination and root growth*. (Thijs Bosker, Chemosphere, 2019) It has even been identified as a global environmental threat for terrestrial-, aquatic ecosystems and human health. Using Optimum Biostimulants can help farmers and growers to tackle the social pressure that reaches the agriculture sector from the external environment. This by reducing the need to use hazardous chemicals and microplastic containing products significantly and end with an even healthier vegetable, seed or flower crop! Please note that Optimum Biostimulants is not a curing product. If you see symptoms of a certain disease it is important to use a curing crop protection product.