See tips in the UF/IFAS Tip of the Week for avoiding the salt-out of liquid fertilizers.

The UF/IFAS Tip of the Week, by multi-county citrus Extension agent Ajia Paolillo, shared how to avoid the salt-out of liquid fertilizers due to cold weather, in an accompanying Citrus Industry article. Liquid fertilizers salt-out when the fertilizer solids come out of solution and form crystals or sediment in the bottom of the tank during cold weather. According to the article, “this typically happens to higher analysis liquid-fertilizer solutions” when the outdoor temperature is low. Solids can become difficult to mix back into solution, and the fertilizer will not be as effective or can clog the irrigation lines. See Paolillo’s tips for keeping liquid fertilizers from salting out below.

Stopping the Salt-Out of Liquid Fertilizers

It’s important to know the solubility rates of your fertilizer based on temperature because different materials have different solubility rates at different temperatures, according to the article. The salt-out temperature of a fertilizer is based on “the chemical analysis, nutrient sources, and the solubility of these materials in the solution.” Combing different nutrients will change the solubility rates of a fertilizer mixture.

Paolillo recommends the “ff choosing to apply liquid fertilizer during the winter months, be aware of the potential for salt-out. Purchase fertilizer with formulations that are more stable during winter temperatures.”

Paolillo also recommends the following when the weather is cold concerning the salt-out of liquid fertilizers:

  • Before running the fertilizer through the irrigation system, check the holding tank for signs of crystallization and sediment.
  • Agitate the liquid in the tank to attempt to dissolve the solids back into solution.
  • If the solids will not dissolve back into solution, wait until the weather is warmer and attempt agitation again.

Griffin Fertilizer is committed to helping both growers and ranchers make sound agronomic and economic decisions in order to maximize the health of their grove and pasture. As a full-service custom dry & liquid fertilizer blender and crop protection product distributor, we will continue our mission to further advance Florida agriculture. For questions or concerns about your farm or pasture, contact us and one of our team will be in touch.