Gypsum Boosts Soil Nutrition

AgriNews. Demand for gypsum, a tool that farmers use to make soils healthy and manageable, is on the rise across the state and country.  Farmers and gypsum distributors met in Indianapolis recently to learn about Gypsum.

“Essentially, gypsum is calcium sulfate, it has the ability to change the chemistry in the soil in such a way so that compacted clay soils become softer and mellower.”

Gypsum allows water and air to move through soil, making it aerated and moist. Farmers who use gypsum tend to notice that their implements move easier.

Rodney Rulon, a corn and soybean farmer in Arcadia, applies gypsum in the fall and sometimes in early spring, depending on the weather.

“I’ve been using gypsum for 10 years,” he said. “We were fairly early adopters, but there were certainly other people we learned from.

“We’re working on two things — one is soil structure: To improve the soil and water infiltration, to help get water down through the roots. Secondly, it’s our sulfur source for soil nutrition.”

Rulon said that he has seen soil quality improvement since adding gypsum to his fields.

“Gypsum has been used in parts of the world for centuries,” Chamberlain said. “Only recently have we had new supplies of gypsum in U.S. agriculture. As a result, there’s a growing demand for gypsum. A lot of farmers are using gypsum now.

“We did a survey and report on farmers that have used it long term versus short term. Gypsum users are seeing benefits that increase over time, including yield, changes in their need for nutrient applications and better water infiltration.”

[Farmers interested in gypsum should first get a soil test and then talk to us at Fertile Soil Solutions]