Soil health is the cornerstone of balanced crop nutrition. Up to 60% of yield is dependent on soil fertility. Setting the foundation for healthy soils provides greater crop productivity and sustains the land for generations to come.
Each harvest comes with a degree of soil nutrient removal, depending on the crop and yield. Consider a fall fertilizer application to maintain nutrients in the soil after harvest and prepare fields for the 2021 growing season. Read on to learn how interpreting soil test results and strategic application timing can set you up for success next year.
The 4R program still is and will continue to be a very important program for the crop nutrition industry.
For Luke Lantz, a farmer from Lake Crystal, Minnesota, fall fertilization plans are not a one-size-fits-all program.
In his keynote address at the 11th International Conference on Precision Agriculture, Dr. Newell Kitchen, USDA-ARS, highlighted the significant role that nutrient management plays in the industry.
States and tribal agencies have had the responsibility in the USA to establish nutrient criteria for water quality protection, based on the Clean Water Act. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, over 10,000 nutrient and nutrient-related water quality impairments have been listed across 49 states. Some states and tribes have made progress in moving from “narrative” nutrient criteria to “numeric” criteria for protecting surface water resources, while others have faced more challenges.
One of the social requirements of farming today is to run a sustainable business. But that doesn’t mean science should fall by the wayside. Just the opposite, in fact.
Every January, millions of resolutions are made to eat healthier, get organized, or stop bad habits. But New Year’s resolutions can be made on the farm, too – especially when it comes to improving your soil fertility.
Straw removal by burning improves seedbed preparation and seedling establishment. Burning also helps to reduce nitrogen (N) tie-up, as microbes decompose the straw residue, and it results in nutrient release from the combusting straw. However, burning can result in loss of most of the N and sulfur (S) contained in the residue and it can create concerns regarding environmental quality.
In the summer of 2008, after wet weather in much of the central United States, soils began to dry, and farmers felt an urgent need to get in the field as quickly as possible to prepare soils and plant as the optimum planting window narrowed. As a result, some soils may have been tilled at moisture levels that were prime for increased compaction at the bottom of the implement’s depth of travel. Soil compaction may have also increased more than normal beneath tractor wheels and the tracks of heavy fertilizer, herbicide and seed tender machinery.