Strawberry Fertilizer Recommendations

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1. Strawberry Fertilizer Recommendations

2. How our Recommended Fertilizers Work on Strawberry

2.1 Lono

2.2 Albina

2.3 Sulis

2.4 Indra

3. Our Published Papers on Strawberry

4. Strawberry Trial Data

Section 1

Fertilizer Recommendations for Strawberry

Our Recommendations for Strawberry

  • Lono – Yield

    Lono focuses the strawberry plant on reproductive growth (fruit), rather than the vegetative growth stimulated by conventional Nitrogen fertilisers. Lono uses Levity’s LimiN chemistry to hold nitrogen in the amine form which improves photosynthesis, root and fruit growth, and increases yield.

  • Albina – Shelf Life

    Albina is a pioneering new calcium fertilizer that can reduce physiological disorders, improve flower set & fruit holding, and increase firmness and shelf life in strawberry crops. Albina uses LoCal technology to help fruit absorb calcium, a nutrient that can improve quality but is poorly absorbed by developing fruits.

  • Indra – Protect

    Indra improves growth and quality of strawberry crops by helping them cope with stress caused by heat, cold, salinity, drought and high UV light. Stress causes strawberry crops to produce toxins (ROS) that damage cells and reduce quality.

  • Sulis – Earliness Colour & Brix

    Sulis builds maturity (colour and brix). It works by supplying molybdenum and boron in a special formulation that helps the fruit maximise the function of the enzymes responsible for maturation, building better levels of colour and brix to allow earlier picking.

Indra Fertiliser Bottle

Lono

For increased crop growth and yield.

Albina Fertiliser Bottle

Albina

For Quality, Shelf Life & Health.

Indra Fertiliser Bottle

Indra

Improves stress tolerance.

Sulis Fertiliser Bottle

Sulis

For improved quality, colour and taste.

Section 2

How Our Recommended Fertilizers Work on Strawberry

Section 2.1

Lono

Lono Product Label

Use Lono to Increase Strawberry Yield

When strawberry crops are supplied with too much nitrogen, vegetative growth tends to accelerate at the expense of fruit growth, this means a disproportionate amount of the nitrogen applied to the crop is used by the plant to grow leaf rather than yhsn being used to produce fruit. It is also why increasing nitrogen applications can reduce fruit quality. Due to this, farmers must carefully balance their nitrogen applications to ensure that the strawberry crop has got enough and not too much Nitrogen.

Why does Nitrogen cause vegetative growth ahead of fruit development?

        1) Strawberry crops are bad at taking up Nitrogen Fertilizer.

Strawberry crops are inefficient at capturing nitrogen fertilizer applied, and only take in between 8% and 20% of applied nitrogen. This is because of instability in the ‘form’ of nitrogen in the environment.

Strawberry plants can take up nitrogen in the following forms: Amine (NH2), Ammonium (NH4) and Nitrate (NO3). When nitrogen fertilizer is applied, competing microorganisms quickly change the form of the nitrogen from amine (NH2) to ammonium (NH4) to nitrate (NO3). This means that even though nitrogen may be applied applied in the more productive amine form it is quickly converted by microorganisms to ammonium (resulting in losses via volatilisation), and then into nitrate (which is mostly lost via leaching). Strawberry crops are bad at taking up nitrogen with most of the nitrogen being lost either by volatilization or leaching. The small amount of nitrogen that the strawberry crop is able to take up is mostly in nitrate (NO3) form because of the quick conversion by the microorganisms.

Take away: : When we apply nitrogen fertilizer to strawberries, most of the nitrogen is not taken up by the crop and the nitrogen it manages to take in mostly comes in the form of ‘Nitrate’ (NO3).

        2) The ‘Form’ of Nitrogen affects which part of the strawberry crop grows

Even though Amine (NH2), Ammonium (NH4) and Nitrate (NO3) are all forms of Nitrogen, each ‘form’ taken up makes the strawberry crop grow differently.

Nitrates (NO3), which is the vast majority of what is taken up with conventional fertiliser applications, are processed in leaves. Here the crop converts the nitrate into amine nitrogen. This accumulation of nitrate nitrogen in foliage makes the plant produce the growth hormone ‘Auxin’ in the leaves, leading to increased vegetative growth and the expense of strawberry fruit growth.

Amine nitrogen (NH2) is processed in the roots and is easily converted into proteins. Amine nitrogen accumulation in the roots does not result in increased auxin growth hormone and therefore vegetative growth remains stable. It does however lead to production of the growth hormone ‘Cytokinin’ which is responsible for growing the reproductive areas of the plants such as fruit.

Take away: When strawberry crops take up Amine Nitrogen (NH2), emphasis is put on growth of actual strawberries rather than vegetative growth.

Our Solution

Levity have developed the fertilizer Lono which uses ‘LimiN’ Technology. LimiN Technology supplies ‘Stabilized Amine Nitrogen’ (NH2) which does not get converted to ammonium (NH4) and nitrate (NO3).

This has 2 significant advantages to other nitrogen fertilizers:

  1. The nitrogen is no longer lost to the environment by volatilization and leaching.
  2. The crop takes up the nitrogen in amine (NH2) form which has a far greater emphasis on strawberry fruit and flower production & growth rather than vegetative growth.
Indra Fertiliser Bottle

Experiments at Myerscough college show the effect of Stabilized Amine Nitrogen (Using our Lono-K Fertilizer with LimiN technology) compared to the same nutrients applied without stabilization.

More field trials, this time in California show the comparison in strawberry yield results between Levity’s Lono-K (With LimiN technology) and standard fertilizer programmes supplying the same nutrients in un-stabilized form.

Lono K gave greatly higher yields that the industry standard. The trial ended early because the farmer decided to turn over the whole crop over to Lono.

Section 2.2

Albina

Lono Product Label

Use Albina to Improve Strawberry Quality

Most strawberry growers know that calcium is important for the fruit and its quality. It helps increase rigidity in cell walls, reduces the susceptibility to disease, and improves firmness and shelf life. However, calcium strawberry fertilizers are often ‘hit and miss’ and cause erratic results. This is because calcium is poorly absorbed by maturing strawberries. Strawberry farmers often apply larger amounts of calcium to overcome the problem which yields little positive results. The problem is not due to a lack of supply of calcium, but rather, the inefficiency of strawberry crops in absorbing the nutrient.

Why is calcium poorly absorbed by strawberry crops?

Calcium absorption is strawberries is strongly linked to the transport of auxins, a plant growth hormone. Good auxin transport results in the strawberry crop being able to easily absorb calcium. In the fruit’s infancy, auxins in the seed are transported into the developing fruit, and therefore, calcium applied is easily absorbed. However, ripening in the strawberry fruit is triggered by ending of auxin transport from seed to fruit. When the strawberries begin to ripen and turn red their ability to absorb calcium is significantly reduced due to this ending of auxin transport.

Since red strawberries have very little auxin, calcium fertilizer applied is absorbed by the leaves and the green fruit, the red fruit will no longer absorb it. Unfortunately, these red fruits are often the very fruit farmers are targeting with their calcium application.

This is why results from conventional calcium strawberry fertilizers are erratic. The targeted fruit cannot absorb the calcium and the fertilizer is wasted.

Our Solution

Levity’s Albina fertilizer which uses LoCal Technology was designed with this in mind. LoCal technology enables the strawberry fruit (naturally low in auxin) to absorb calcium in the absence of auxins. This means that Albina stimulates calcium transport into ripening fruit where conventional strawberry fertilizers cannot. Due to this efficiency, it is possible to get impressive results with very little input, because no excess calcium is applied and wasted.

Albina Fertiliser Bottle

Section 2.3

Sulis

Sulis product Label

How Sulis Improves Colour & Brix

Many of the strawberrys produced by farmers is not sold due to poor gradings and quality problems. Size, taste, colour and uniformity are all impacted on by plant physiology.

The special formulation of Sulis helps fruit build better levels of colour and brix to allow earlier picking. It promotes the processes of maturation that are normally triggered by the hormone ABA. Importantly, Sulis does this without causing a spike in ethylene, which can retard shelf life and create quality problems.

The processes of maturation require molybdenum and boron, but as molybdenum does not produce visible deficiency symptoms, the enzymes are often not adequately functioning, leading to a slow build of colour and sugars. The chemistry in Sulis uses these nutrients alongside natural chemistry developed by Levity’s team of crop scientists, that actively encourage the functioning of the plant’s natural process of maturity, whilst ensuring these key nutrients in the process are available.

By bringing maturity forwards, Sulis can also help farmers get strawberry crops to market earlier, enabling harvest to take place over a longer season.

Sulis Fertiliser Bottle

Section 2.4

Indra

Lono Product Label

Use Indra to Help Strawberry crops Tolerate Stress

Indra promotes the plant’s own antioxidant production and supplies the nutrients needed to make their manufacture possible. Indra can help protect crops from loss of quality and yield, improve colour, and reduce susceptibility to disease.

Watch this video to find out more on our fertilizer Indra.

Enquire to increase your strawberry yield

Either call “(+44)1995 642351″ or email info@levitycropscience.com to enquire.

Section 3

Published Papers on Strawberry

Label for Elona Fertiliser

Published Papers on Strawberry

At levity, our science is proven, published and peer reviewed in the academic and scientific community. Read our scientific papers on strawberry.

Section 4

Trial Data For Strawberry

Our strawberry fertilizers are independently trialed around the world to make sure that they excel above conventional fertilizers in all agronomic and weather conditions.

In this section explore some of the independent trials of our recommended fertilizers on strawberry crops.

Yield

Shelf Life

Disease Resistance

Yield

Trial: Albina | California (2016)

Independent trial with Holden Research looking at the effect of Levity’s LoCal tech (Used in Albina) on strawberry.

Design:

4 replicates, 4 applications made of either grower standard treatment or Levity’s LoCal at 1lt per ha.

Assessed over two harvests as % harvest utilization per 6 plant pot.

%

Higher Fruit Weight than Grower Standard.

%

Higher Marketable Yield than Grower Standard.

Trial: Albina | La Huaca, Peru (2012)

Independent study by Universidad Agraria la Molina looking at the effect of Levity’s LoCal technology (Used in Albina Fertilizer) on strawberry.

Design:

Replicated trial plot on variety Aluvion.

2 1 lt/ha applications of LoCal Tech (used in Albina) applied at 14 day inteval following flowering. Control plots treated with some analysis. Control plots treated with some analysis product minus LoCal tech.

Assessments made by Universidad Agraria la Molina at first harvest.

%

Higher Fruit Number Than Standard Calcium Fertilizer.

Trial: Lono | Preston (2017)

Experiments at Levity’s Myerscough University College research site show how applying stabilised amine N alters where strawberries grow, compared to the same nutrients without stabilisation.

%

More Flowers & Green Fruit.

Trial: Lono | California, USA (2017)

Here we present some results from a trial in California where Lono-K (Marketed as SizeN-K in the USA) was used 3 times at 1 gallon per acre in addition to a standard fertiliser programme.

More Crates Per Acre Harvested

Shelf Life

Trial: Albina | California (2016)

Independent trial with Holden Research looking at the effect of Levity’s LoCal tech (Used in Albina) on strawberry.

Design:

4 replications of 10 grow bags containing 16 plants each were set out as plots labelled A-C.

The strawberries were harvested 2 days after treatment.

The strawberries were graded to select 100 berries from each of the treatments across all 4 plots of similar size and ripeness. The berries were laid out over 2 sheets of blotting paper per treatment. An additional 10 strawberries were carefully selected to be stored either at 20°C of 5°C and regularly observed and photographed.

%

Higher Firmness (Ambient).

%

Higher Firmness (Refrigerated).

Ambient Storage:

9 Days after treatment

Refrigerated:

16 Days after treatment

Trial: La Huaca | Peru (2012)

Independent study by Universidad Agraria la Molina looking at the effect of Levity’s LoCal technology (Used in Albina Fertilizer) on strawberry.

Design:

Replicated trial plot on variety Aluvion.

2 1 lt/ha applications of LoCal Tech (used in Albina) applied at 14 day inteval following flowering. Control plots treated with some analysis. Control plots treated with some analysis product minus LoCal tech.

Assessments made by Universidad Agraria la Molina at first harvest.

%

Greater Firmnes than Grower Standard.

Trial: UK (2016)

Independent trial looking at the effect of Levity’s LoCal tech (used in Albina) on firmness post harvest of strawberry.

Design:

4 replicates of 160 plant pots.

1 1 liter per hectare application of LoCal Technology (used in Albina) applied 2 days pre-harvest vs control.

100 fruit per plot held in refrigerated storage.

Pressure tests taken at 9 and 16 days after treatment (DAT).

%

Greater Firmnes than Grower Standard (9 DAT).

Disease Resistance

Trial: Colombia (2012)

Study looking at the effect of Levity’s LoCal Tech (used in Albina) on post harvest disease on strawberry.

Design:

4 replicates of 160 plant pots.

Replicated trial on commercial farm in Colombia.

2 1lt/ha applications of LoCal Tech (used in Albina) applied 7 days pre-harvest. Grower standards used weekly applications of Klip Calcio (Colinagro) at 2lt/ha from flowering until harvest. 50 fruit taken from each plot at two harvests on 8th and 15th December.

Assessed in storage 4 days post harvest for post harvest disease.

%

Less disease than grower standard.

Section 6

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