Matt Madsen, Ph.D., of the USDA’s Agricultural Research Service (ARS) and representatives from Aquatrols Corporation of America recently presented new findings on a patent-pending surfactant seed coating technology at the International Symposium on Adjuvants for Agrochemicals (ISAA).
Madsen presented the research in April at the 10th meeting of the ISAA, which attracted 500 of the world’s leaders in agricultural surfactant and adjuvant technologies.
Madsen disclosed the results of a study conducted in July and August 2012 at the Eastern Oregon Agricultural Research Center in Burns, Ore. His findings showed that seed coating technology may provide a novel approach for delivering soil surfactants in water repellent environments and aid in seed establishment of new golf course greens and sports fields.
Throughout the study, surfactant seed coating technology was shown to ameliorate a severely water repellent soil and subsequently increase rootzone water reserves for turfgrass seedling emergence, cover, and biomass production.
Madsen stated that the merger of seed coating and surfactant technologies could potentially reduce the cost, time and amount of seed needed in the agricultural, horticultural and turfgrass industries. In light of increasing demands on water sources and diminishing supplies, this may provide a solution to addressing issues related to water scarcity.
Though there is more research to be done, Aquatrols is optimistic about Madsen’s findings and the enormous potential behind this surfactant seed coating technology.
“These results reinforce our belief that surfactant seed coating technology can play an important role in addressing the serious issues related to water scarcity,” said Aquatrols President Tracy Jarman. “Our work with Dr. Madsen underscores our company’s commitment to developing new and innovative solutions to the challenges of tomorrow,” she added.
The collaboration between Aquatrols and Dr. Madsen is the result of a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) that the company signed with the ARS last year and is intended to further develop and apply technology that Madsen began developing while he was a graduate student at Brigham Young University.