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Pioneering the Future

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Crop Guide: Onion Fertilization Program

Fertilization programs for onions

 

The holistic approach of Haifa for plant nutrition offers the growers diverse options for enhancing the plant performance and fertilizer use efficiency. According to Haifa's plant nutrition approach, the fertilization program takes in consideration alternative fertilizer formulas and alternative application methods (fertigation only, fertigation + foliar, fertigation + controlled release fertilizer or controlled release fertilizer only) for each growth stage and for different environmental conditions to match the plant's nutrition special needs. 

 

These fertilization programs take into consideration:

  • The plant uptake curve for each element (macro, secondary and micronutrients) and each plant growth stage.
  • The best application method for each plant growth stage and for every environmental and climate condition (the methods can be fertigation only, fertigation + foliar, fertigation + controlled release fertilizer, controlled release fertilizer only).
  • Alternative fertilizer formulas or application methods for different conditions that may occur during the growth cycle such as unpredictable climate conditions (drought or extreme temperature) and plant diseases that will damage roots absorption or the leaf's activity.

Special foliar fertilizers with prolonged and better action can be added to the fertilization programs to improve the root uptake and boost plant performance, as part of the overall nutritional program.

 

 

Main fertilization programs for onions are:

 

1. Base and side dressing   A simple and basic program where fertigation cannot be use.

2. Base application with Multicote™ controlled release fertilizer + side dressing For better nutrient use efficiency, saving application costs and less soil compaction.

3. Nutrigation™ using straight fertilizers + side dressing For better nutrient use efficiency, saving application costs and soil compaction.

4. Base dressing with Haifa Turbo-K™ and fertigation using Poly-Feed™ (NPK soluble fertilizer)  A precise nutrient formula application, better nutrient use efficiency, saving application costs and less soil compaction.

5. Base dressing with Multicote™ controlled release fertilizer and fertigation for precise nutrient application rate with precise nutrient formula (Poly-Feed™).

6. Complementary foliar nutrition To enhance plant performance during periods of special needs (nutrients disorders or abiotic stress)
 

Basic assumptions for the following fertilization programs:

Growing medium: Open field.
Soil type: Light to medium.
Expected yield: 65 MT/Ha (85% moisture).

 

Kilograms of macro nutrients removed by 1 ton marketable product

N

P2O5

K2O

CaO

MgO

S

3.0-4.0

1.3-1.8

2.5-5

1.0

0.5

1.8-2.8

 

 

Examples of 5 detailed Fertilization programs for onion:

Option 1. Base and side dressing
A simple and basic program where fertigation cannot be use.

Stage description

Pre-plant

Establishment

Vegetative growth

Bulb initiation

Bulb development

Maturation

duration

 

30 days

30 days

30 days

30 days

30 days

Fertilizers (kg/ha)

Haifa Turbo-K™ 15-15-15

400

300

 

 

 

 

Haifa MAP™ 11-52-0

235

 

 

 

 

 

Haifa K-Mag 0-0-22+18MgO +22 SO3

250

 

 

 

250

 

Dolomite 26%

254

 

 

 

 

 

Urea 46-0-0

 

 

 

 

226

 

Total nutrients  (kg/ha)

N

862

45

 

 

104

 

P2O5

122

 

 

 

 

 

K2O

60

45

 

 

55

 

MgO

30

 

 

 

30

 

CaO

66

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total nutrients (kg/ha)

N

P2O5

K2O

MgO

CaO

235

122

215

60

66

* In soil with high phosphorus levels use Haifa Turbo-K™ 18-09-18

 

Option 2. Base application with controlled release fertilizer (Multicote™) + side dressing
For better nutrient use efficiency, saving application costs and less soil compaction.

Due to the high nutrients use efficiency with Multicote™, application rates can be reduced to about 70% of the N and K2O compared to conventional fertilization.

 

 

Application rate - % of common practice

% coated nutrients

 

N

P2O5

K2O

N

P2O5

K2O

Light soil

60-70

100

70

70

-

30-50

Heavy soil

70-90

100

80

50

-

30-50

 

 

Stage description

Pre-plant

Establishment

Vegetative growth

Bulb initiation

Bulb development

Maturation

duration

 

30 days

30 days

30 days

30 days

30 days

Fertilizers (kg/ha)

Multicote™ Agri 15-15-15

1000

 

 

 

 

 

Dolomite 26%

250

 

 

250

 

 

Multi-K™ 13-0-46

 

 

 

100

 

 

Total nutrients  (kg/ha)

N

150

 

 

13

 

 

P2O5

150

 

 

 

 

 

K2O

150

 

 

45

 

 

MgO

25

 

 

25

 

 

CaO

65

 

 

65

 

 

 

Total nutrients (kg/ha)

N

P2O5

K2O

MgO

CaO

 

163

150

195

50

130

 

                       

 

Option 3. Fertigation using straight fertilizers + side dressing
For better nutrient use efficiency, saving application costs and  less soil compaction.

Stage description

Pre-plant

Establishment

Vegetative growth

Bulb initiation

Bulb development

Maturation

duration

 

30 days

30 days

30 days

30 days

30 days

Fertilizers (kg/ha)

Multi-K™ 13-0-46

 

100

140

140

170

 

Haifa MAP™ 11-52-0

 

75

50

50

50

 

Magnisal™ 11-0-0+16MgO

 

34

68

68

90

 

Haifa Cal™  11-0-0+26CaO

 

50

50

75

75

 

Ammonium Nitrate 34-0-0

 

25

25

50

50

 

Total nutrients  (kg/ha)

N

 

42

48

48

66

 

P2O5

 

46

31

31

31

 

K2O

 

46

64

64

78

 

MgO

 

5

11

11

14

 

CaO

 

13

13

13

20

 

 

Total nutrients (kg/ha)

N

P2O5

K2O

MgO

CaO

204

139

252

41

59

 

Option 4. Fertigation  using Poly-Feed™ (NPK soluble fertilizer)
Precise nutrient formula application, better nutrient use efficiency, saving application costs and less soil compaction.

Stage description

Pre-plant

Establishment

Vegetative growth

Bulb initiation

Bulb development

Maturation

duration

 

30 days

30 days

30 days

30 days

30 days

Fertilizers (kg/ha)

Poly-Feed™ 12-43-12

 

45

 

 

 

 

Poly-Feed™ 19-19-19

 

 

240

 

 

 

Poly-Feed™ 14-7-21

 

 

 

300

 

 

Poly-Feed™ 12-5-40

 

 

 

 

675

 

Magnisal™ 11-0-0+16MgO

 

 

60

60

110

 

Haifa Cal™  11-0-0+26CaO

 

 

60

60

110

 

Total nutrients  (kg/ha)

N

 

5

61

58

110

 

P2O5

 

19

46

21

34

 

K2O

 

5

46

63

270

 

MgO

 

 

10

10

18

 

CaO

 

 

16

16

29

 

 

Total nutrients (kg/ha)

N

P2O5

K2O

MgO

CaO

234

120

384

38

61

 

Option 5. Base dressing with controlled release fertilizer (Multicote™) and fertigation for precise nutrient application rate with precise nutrient formula (Poly-Feed™).

Due to the high fertilizing efficiency of the Multicote™, the application rate will be only ~70% of the N and K2O common application practice:

 

Stage description

Pre-plant

Establishment

Vegetative growth

Bulb initiation

Bulb development

Maturation

duration

 

30 days

30 days

30 days

30 days

30 days

Fertilizers (kg/ha)

Multicote™ Agri 15-15-15

300

 

 

 

 

 

Poly-Feed™ 19-19-19

 

100

 

 

 

 

Poly-Feed™ 14-7-21

 

 

100

150

 

 

Poly-Feed™ 12-5-40

 

 

 

 

600

 

Magnisal™ 11-0-0+16MgO

 

60

60

60

90

 

Haifa Cal™  11-0-0+26CaO

 

60

60

60

90

 

Total nutrients  (kg/ha)

N

45

35

30

37

95

 

P2O5

45

19

7

11

30

 

K2O

45

19

21

32

240

 

MgO

 

10

10

10

14

 

CaO

 

16

10

16

24

 

Total nutrients (kg/ha)

N

P2O5

K2O

MgO

CaO

242

112

357

44

72

 

Complementary foliar nutrition - To enhance plant performance during periods of special needs (nutrients disorders or abiotic stress)

Foliar application of nutrients provides complementary fertilization with high added value, corrective nutrition when deficiencies are noticed and growth boosting during critical stages of the crop development. This foliar nutrition program can be added to all fertilization programs.

 

Stage description

Pre-plant

Establishment

Vegetative growth

Bulb initiation

Bulb development

Maturation

duration

 

30 days

30 days

30 days

30 days

30 days

Fertilizers (kg/ha)

Poly-Feed™ 20-20-20

 

1 kg/ha, conc. 0.5%

1.5 kg/ha, conc. 0.5%

 

 

 

Magnisal™ 11-0-0+16MgO

 

 

 

2 kg/ha, conc. 1%

2 kg/ha, conc. 1%

 

Haifa Bonus™

 

 

 

5 kg/ha, conc. 2%

5 kg/ha, conc. 2%

 

 

Need more information about growing onions? You can always return to the onion fertilizer & onion crop guide table of contents