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5 STEPS TO BETTER SOIL FERTILITY

on Monday, 26 March 2018. Posted in Blog, Property, Sheep, Dairy, Beef

  1. SOIL TESTING  

Provides you with vital information about your soils

  • • A foundation for your fertilizer plan

  • • A small farm expense costing in the region of €1.25/ha/yr and is valid for 5 years

  •  • A standard soil test will give the soils fertility status as follows; pH, lime requirement, phosphorus (P) and potassium (K).

SOIL PH & LIME

• Lime improves the availability of Nitrogen, Phosphorus, Potassium, Sulphur, Calcium and Magnesium

• Lime at least every 5 years

• Ground limestone can be spread at any time

• Apply lime as per soil test report. Avoid over-liming as it can result in trace element imbalances.

  1. TARGET INDEX 3 FOR P & K

    • Index 3 is the optimum level for crop growth

    • Only by soil testing will you know your P & K levels

    • Index 4 soils (high fertility) are a resource - use them to save money on fertilizer

    • Index 1 and 2 soils (low fertility) need additional nutrients

    • Monitor your soil fertility by looking at previous analysis.

  2. SLURRY & MANURES

    • Plan when and where slurry/manure will be best utilised

    • Aim to apply slurry in spring during moist cool conditions

    • Apply slurry and manures on land that requires P & K

    • Take account of nutrients contained in slurry if applying chemical fertilizer to the same area

    • Always observe buffer zones from watercourses and wells.

  3. NUTRIENT BALANCE

    Develop a fertilizer plan for your farm

    • Get the best value from fertilisers and organic manure

    • Enhance crop yield and animal performance

    • Reduce environmental risks due to field losses of excess nutrients

    • Potential cost savings when all nutrient inputs are accounted for

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