buying fertilizer?? Buy Smart!!

Discussion in 'Fertilizer Application' started by The Ranger, Mar 10, 2008.

  1. Mscotrid

    Mscotrid LawnSite Bronze Member
    from USA
    Posts: 1,449


    I agree with that statement 100%...maybe with a tight upcoming year some of those might be weeded out (no pun intended) and I can bill more for my service.:cool2::cool2:
     
  2. golfguy

    golfguy LawnSite Member
    Posts: 108

    I whole heartedly agree with grassmechanic. To base price solely on N is not really a true picture. To get a true picture on comparing N you pretty well have to price it out on a per day basis. Some products are going to last much longer then others in which the percentage of N will have no control over.
     
  3. bug-guy

    bug-guy LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 966

    i have sold more 24 -2-11 than 16-0-8 this year by showing the customer the cost per 1000 is .30 cheaper per k
     
  4. rcreech

    rcreech Sponsor
    Male, from OHIO
    Posts: 6,052

    Again,

    You have to be comparing the "same" type of product (SCU and quality) to price shop for N.

    You may not always want to buy the cheapest source of N/1000, but if you have comparable product then that is where this comes in.
     
  5. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 12,077

    Ok, experienced guys--good advice.

    What is sulfer coated urea worth as compared to urea?

    If you have 30-0-0 with 75 percent SCU, how much more is it worth than 30-0-0 with no SCU? Or with 25 percent SCU?

    What about IBDU or methylene urea? PPSCU?

    If nitrogen (as urea) is worth 75 cents per pound--how much is reasonable if it contains 30 percent SCU?
     
  6. boats47

    boats47 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 244

    Urea is an organic compound (NH₂)₂CO, also known as Carbamide. Urea was one of the first organic compounds to be artificially synthesized from inorganic base materials, pretty cool I must say. You can also make it out of just about any mammal or amphibian pee (that’s a technical term). In our industry it produced from synthetic ammonia and carbon dioxide. Urea is the highest in Nitrogen content of all the solid formed nitrogenous fertilizers, and as I remember this did translate to lower costs (if that makes sense). Urea is very high in water solubility and that is why we use it in our fertilizers today and when we add sulfur to the equation it is our time release. So your, typically, 37-0-0 is 37% Nitrogen and I believe about 15-17% sulfur. This % of sulfur would higher with a fertilizer that is say 10% Nitrogen and give you a better time release (longer period of release). It also helps to protect the pure Urea found in the core of a granular of fertilizer. Companies also add sealants over the granular to aid in the time release process and to make the product more durable, that is why if you go with a cheap fert it very dusty.
    I am not sure if this answered your question or not, but that is the gist of urea from what I remember….. I am sure one of old "timers" would answer this beter than me.
     
  7. rcreech

    rcreech Sponsor
    Male, from OHIO
    Posts: 6,052

    Very good questions!

    I think it is hard to put a monetary value on SCU and slow release fert. I don't have a dollar figure but I look at SCU as a premium product with slower and extended feeding. I think it would be very difficult to compare a 25% SCU to a 50% SCU....but whatever the difference in price you just need to make sure that you are going to benefit from the added cost.

    I went from 30% SCU this year to all 50% SCU on rounds 2 and 3. I didn't care about the price difference, because I wanted to extend my feeding a little longer. Still using a 30% product, just a little different SCU%. And it really didn't cost me very much more at all to go that way.
     
  8. golfguy

    golfguy LawnSite Member
    Posts: 108

    I will leave it at disagree. If a product lasts longer on the ground that has the greatest potential in difference in cost.

    Price per day method allows you to compare EVERY source of N straight up whether it is Ammonium Sulphate, Urea or Sulphur Coated Urea.
     
  9. rcreech

    rcreech Sponsor
    Male, from OHIO
    Posts: 6,052

    I agree with you...and I think we are saying the same thing!

    But here is what I am saying:

    If you are ONLY looking at the cost of N....then you will probably ALWAYS use urea. THIS IS A BAD IDEA! But if you are "price shopping" for a Nitrogen source that is comparable and what you need to use, then that is when you will compare price/N/1000.

    Just like the 25%N SCU vs. 30%N SCU.

    You can't really compare 46%N to any source containing SCU IMO. There is just no comparison!

    As far as the length of feeding....I do think slow release is worth more, but as I stated previously, how do you put a monetary value on "length of feeding"?
     
  10. Harley-D

    Harley-D LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 508

    I was just gonna say that if it is a controlled release, couldn't you determine the #N/App/Year? If you apply 4#N/year or so, that may be over 6 apps or 4 depending on the amount of slow release in each app. Or Form of N. Methylene Urea is bad a$$ IMO.

    I would think that anyone would try and save themselves a whole round of apps if possible. How much time and gas does that save?
    With prices where they are, everyone needs to seperate themselves from the competition by determining their cost per app, per M, per whatever and making their company more efficient. So...Apples to apples the only way to compare.

    One other thing. Has anyone measured the distance between N prills when appling 34-3-11 at 3lb/n/k or less? IMO it's a little light. But you can't argue that a lb of N/k is a lb of N/k. 34-3-11 @ 3lbs or 24-5-11 @ 4lbs.
     

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