Present Status: Generally, past research conducted in the United States has shown that only one-half to two-thirds as much fertilizer is required to produce maximum crop yields when the fertilizer is properly banded as when it is broadcast. However, the magnitude of plant response to banding compared to broadcast applications varies widely with soil nutrient levels, soil temperature, soil pH, and the mobility of the nutrient being applied. Greatest benefits from banding result from (a) applications to soils having low or very-low soil test levels of the nutrient in question, (b) applications to crops grown in cool climates, (3) applications to either acid or alkaline soils, and (d) applications of nutrients designated as being immobile. In contrast, broadcast and band applications have about equal efficiencies on soils with medium to high soil test levels, neutral pH, high temperatures, and the nutrient is considered to be a mobile nutrient in soil. Because of the potential for greater efficiency from banded banding may be one way to lower fertilizer costs under certain conditions.
Sims, J. L., "Current Research on Band Application of Fertilizer To Burley Tobacco" (1983). Soil Science News and Views. 166.