Farm Trial: Josh Hiemstra on Improving Fertility Efficiency

Farm Trial: Josh Hiemstra on Improving Fertility Efficiency

We are passionate about the success of our local farmers, which is why we take such an incredible level of care in developing our products. Josh Hiemstra, a local leader in the no-till farming industry, shared his experience working with our liquid biological, BIOACTIVE LiquiLifeTM (formerly known as Purple Cow CX-1). As you will see from the breakdown of a recent trial from his 2023 season, the addition of a liquid biological to his fertility program increased yields, lowered fertility costs, and increased nutrient density. All these factors contributed positively to his bottom line.

Meet The Farmer:

Josh Hiemstra – Rosendale, WI

2020 Local Lake Association Water Quality Award

No-Till Farmer – Responsible Nutrient Management Award

Hiemstra’s 700-acre farm went from 10k gallons UAN annually to 3,500 gallons with the addition of liquid biology to his nutrient program.

“Adding biology from Purple Cow Organics was the missing link for both yield and profit.” – Hiemstra



Biology Benefits:

In Hiemstra’s words: biology has helped him get the most out of his manure and rotations, climate-proof his farm to thrive in wet or dry conditions, and take his soil off of ‘food stamps’ by growing his nutrients rather than amending with them. “I’m not spending a whole lot to get 200 [bu/acre]. While I want to have the highest yields, I’d rather have the highest profit!” (Josh Hiemstra)

2023 Planting

His corn yields in 2023:  Heimstra planted corn with 3 different protocols, all 3 protocols have the same starter. Heimstra refers to the starter as his “soil primer.”

The Soil Primer

This starter, used on all protocols, is Carbon, Biology, and 103 units of N.

2 gallons of CX-1

2 gallons boost with pre herbicide

10 gal 32% (33# N)

70# N from spring-applied liquid manure 

The Protocol

Protocol A: in addition to the starter above, a foliar of 4 gallons of CX-1 (biology) with 5 gallons of Amino 15, (carbon, food source, and amino N) was applied with a post herbicide pass at V-8 just prior to canopy. This foliar mix brought an additional 10# N from the amino 15 for a total of 113#N.

Protocol B: in addition to the starter above, 12 gal 32% was y-dropped at V-8.  With 40 units of N in this y-drop application, the total nitrogen was 143#N.

Protocol C: Is only the starter from above, no foliar, these acres had a total N of only 103#N.

2023 Corn Yield and Nitrogen Efficiency

Precision placement and split applications of carbon minerals and biology can have an immediate positive impact on yield and NUE. We typically see N:Bu ratios in the .6-.7 range.

N-Bu rates this impressive take a few years to build.

 For more information on Josh Hiemstra and the amazing results from this trial, contact us here!