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New seed dressing offers improvement to OSR

Date Added: 16/05/2011

A new growth promoting seed dressing which provides an essential array of plant nutrients could help oilseed rape growers achieve improved crop establishment rates and higher final yields according to Richard Elsdon, Technical Manager for United Oilseeds.


Detonator is a micro and macro-nutrient fertiliser that provides a seed coating consisting of seven nutrients – nitrogen (N), phosphate (P), potassium (K), sulphur (S), magnesium (Mg), manganese (Mn) and zinc (Zn) – which are bound to a complex of organic and amino acids.  Making these nutrients available directly to the germinating seed provides the optimal combination of nutrients needed during the early stages of growth and root development and therefore aids early crop establishment.


“Using a fertiliser based seed dressing acts as an insurance policy against poor crop establishment,” Mr Elsdon explains.  “By ensuring that germinating seedlings have access to all of the necessary nutrients required for successful plant growth and development, the risk of plants suffering early stage nutrient deficiencies is minimised.  This in turn helps the plants to develop a larger root zone which limits the potential for deficiencies at later stages and gives the plant a better chance of surviving winter.  This ultimately gives the crop a head start in the early spring which can result in higher final yields.”


Trials have shown that plants treated with Detonator grew 20% taller during the growth stages to stem elongation (BBCH 31-32) compared to untreated seed, as well as developing roots that were also 20% longer.


Of the nutrients provided by Detonator, phosphate, manganese and zinc are thought to provide the biggest benefit to young seedlings.  “There is often a very low availability of these three nutrients in intensively farmed soils,” Mr Elsdon continues.  “They primarily move via slow diffusion within the soil matrix and are prone to binding to organic matter.  Young plants may therefore suffer from P, Mn and Zn deficiencies, despite the fact the soil is highly fertile, simply because the roots cannot reach a soil volume that is big enough to provide a sufficient amount of nutrients. 


“Detonator prevents these early stage deficiencies by putting the nutrients within reach of the developing roots, which in turn leads to the plant developing a larger root zone.  This limits the potential for nutrient deficiencies at later stages.”


Detonator is particularly suited to well aerated sandy soils, organic soils or calcareous soils where the structure of the soil matrix may prevent access to some key plant nutrients.  It can also be used in conjunction with fungicide seed dressings such as Cruiser OSR to provide a full armoury of protection for newly sown crops.


Detonator – nutrient content:


Content per litre*

Nitrogen (N)


Phosphorus (P)


Potassium (K)


Sulphur (S)


Magnesium (Mg)


Manganese (Mn)


Zinc (Zn)




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