Get prescriptive with customized seed treatments

July 11, 2023
Blake Murnan, an agronomy product development manager with CHS, explains how customized seed treatments can deliver prescriptive pest protection.

Advances in seed treatment technology have enabled farmers to plant earlier and grow healthier crops with less environmental impact compared to foliar-applied products. Blake Murnan, an agronomy product development manager with CHS, says the next evolution of custom-blended seed treatments offers growers more prescriptive, early season protection from pest damage.  

Eliminate unnecessary protection

STI Customized blended seed treatment service from CHS offers more than 350 unique blends so agronomists and growers can fine-tune ingredient sources and rates to match local agronomic challenges.

“Customized seed treatments help growers get the exact seed protection they need without paying for anything extra, which is great for profitability,” Murnan says.

CHS works with local experts, including retailers and growers, to create custom seed treatment blends to protect seeds and young plants. The blending process is computerized, which improves measurement accuracy and final product performance.

Customize components for unique challenges

Murnan says the capabilities of custom seed blending allow for early crop health benefits beyond what typical premix seed treatments offer.

“Some growers, for example, are very concerned with Phytophthora or Pythium diseases, which are detrimental to healthy plant stands,” Murnan explains. “With custom seed treatments, we can manipulate formulations to include two modes of action against those pathogens and increase active ingredient rates to offer excellent protection. In other areas, farmers may need nematicide protection, which many standard seed treatments don’t offer. We can easily add that protection with our blending capabilities.”

Custom seed treatment blends may also include crop health components, such as plant growth regulators or micronutrients that promote early season vigor.

“Many seed treatment advances are in the discovery phase,” says Murnan. “In addition to the pest-specific crop protection products currently in development, farmers will also have access to more biological or ‘green’ chemistries. Looking ahead, plant growth-promoting technologies will optimize plant performance, and micronutrients will likely become more widely available in seed treatments.”