early stage corn field

Jump start yields this year with starter fertilizer

March 06, 2023 4:33 p.m.

Starter fertilizers are an important tool to meet the growing demand for earlier planting, improved crop returns and fine-tuning fertility programs. With increasing economic pressures it’s critical to maximize the efficiency of crop nutrient investments.

Fertilizer is an essential component of successful crop farming, providing plants with the nutrients they need to grow and thrive. It takes the right nutrition to raise crops that excel. Starter fertilizers, in particular, are crucial for ensuring that young plants have the right nutrients at the right time to support strong and healthy growth from the start.

Three benefits of using starter fertilizer:

It can really pay to use starter fertilizers, even in geographies that tend to have warmer planting season can benefit from a stronger start. Get early green-up in colder, wet soils by fertilizing when and where the plant needs it most.

  1. One key advantage to using a starter fertilizer is that they are specifically designed to meet nutrition needs of young plants. Containing a higher concentration of nutrients helps the plants establish a strong and healthy root system critical for overall plant health.


  2. Starter fertilizers can also help improve the overall health of a plant. Starter fertilizer promotes root development for a better stand, and it strengthens your crop during pre-productive growth stages to help overcome disease threats and adverse growing conditions. This can improve the potential yield and quality of the crop, ultimately leading to higher profits for the farmer.


  3. Another benefit of using starter fertilizer is that they can help improve the efficiency of the entire fertilization process. Because they are specifically designed for young plants, they can be applied to the soil at the base of the plant. This ensures that the fertilizer is delivered directly to the roots, where it can most efficiently be absorbed by the plant which will ensure the crop is receiving the maximum benefit from the fertilizer.

The good, better, best approach for selecting a starter fertilizer:

Good: Simply using a starter fertilizer like XLR rate® or 10-34-0

XLR Rate

XLR-rate liquid starter and foliar fertilizers are low-salt, high-orthophosphate NPK blends that provide critical plant nutrition for early growth and harvest. Excel from the start and accelerate growth with XLR-rate. XLR-rate liquid fertilizers can be safely used in close proximity to the seed, roots and foliage for better fertilizer efficiency. Banding XLR-rate also reduces nutrient stratification.

Better: Adding Levesol ZN® to your liquid starter fertilizer to increase nutrient availability

product box for Levesol Zn

Levesol® Zn is a zinc solution chelated with patented ortho-ortho EDDHA and designed to significantly enhance nutrient availability when applied with liquid starter fertilizers. The addition of Levesol ZN allows zinc, phosphorus and other micronutrients already present in the soil more available for plant uptake. Levesol ZN can be blended with most primary, secondary, or micronutrients as well as crop protection products.

Best: Using an advanced and balanced starter fertilizer package

Product Box

Paralign™ is an advanced starter fertilizer that contains key plant nutrients, patented ortho-ortho EDDHA chelate, and an advanced enzyme. Paralign contains nutrients that are necessary to enhance plant growth, increase early season root development, and correct nutrient deficiencies to maximize yield. 

Using a starter fertilizer can help you plant earlier, improve crop returns and fine-tune your fertility program. Protect your investments and your potential yields with an advanced starter fertilizer from CHS to help accelerate your crops.

CHS takes pride in bringing innovative, science-based solutions using advanced technology that provides economic, agronomic and sustainable benefits. For more information on starter fertilizer solutions for your operation, visit chsagronomy.com or talk to your CHS representative.