New Formulation For Pea And Lentil Inoculant

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Becker Underwood reports good results in tests of the new XL formulation of its Nodulator pea and lentil inoculant.

The 40-acre plot on the Greenwood Hutterite Colony is one of 13 field-scale trials across Western Canada for Nodulator XL, developed with a new “highly active” strain of rhizobia, says Ralph deVries, Becker Underwood’s director of marketing.

The new inoculant has received full registration and will be available to farmers this fall. Becker Underwood says it works equally well on both peas and lentils, will be available in self-sticking peat, liquid, and granular formulations. It is a new strain – Strain 1435 – of the Rhizobium leguminosarum biovar viecae, which is the rhizobia found in Nodulator.

The original Nodulator is still recommended as an effective product for inoculating chickpeas and dry beans.

“Nodulator XL is a new strain that does a much better job of fixing nitrogen in both peas and lentils,” says deVries. He says that on company tests across Western Canada, it has consistently shown a three to eight per cent advantage over other products. Based on five-year price and yield averages, deVries says that represents $4.99 to $13.30 more per acre with peas and $8.39 to $22.37 more on lentils.

Lethbridge-based field agronomist Danielle Fletcher says the field trials ranging from 10 to 40 acres in size compared the performance of Nodulator XL with the original Nodulator and other leading inoculant brands,” she says.

Fletcher points out the convenience in having one inoculant, which is equally effective on both peas and lentils. The company recommends producers use the same product application rate when using either the self-adhesive peat or liquid formulations of Nodulator XL. If using the solid-core granules, the application rate can be reduced.

It is recommended that a case of the liquid formulation will treat about 300 bushels, while a case of the sterile peat product will treat about 110 bushels.

With the original Nodulator it was recommended a 50-pound bag of granular inoculant should be applied to 10 acres (on eight-, 10-or 12-inch row spacing), however, with Nodulator XL that 50-pound bag will treat 12.5 acres on eight-inch row spacing, 15 acres on 10-inch spacing, and 19 acres on 12-inch row spacing.

Nodulator XL is compatible with same seed treatments as the original Nodulator. The compatibility charts will be available online at starting Oct. 1.

“We are excited to be introducing this new product which is much more effective at fixing nitrogen,” says deVries. “We are a relatively small company, and it takes a lot of work first of all to screen the potential agents and find something that shows promise, and then to carry out the research that proves its effectiveness.

“We are dealing with living organisms here, so once you do find a suitable strain, then you have to learn how to grow it and multiply it, and then package it so we can deliver a high-quality and effective product to farmers.”

Saskatoon-based Becker Underwood also produces Nodulator N/T for soybeans.

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