Tips for Using Fertiliser Efficiently

Tips for Using Fertiliser Efficiently

Monday, February 7, 2011

With fertiliser prices exceeding £300/t for ammonium nitrate, The British Grassland Society has produced a factsheet with 10 tips for Using Fertiliser Efficiently.

 "The factsheet pools the technical knowledge of our Council and R&D Committee members, giving some timely advice as we wait for the right conditions for spring applications," says Jessica Buss.

 "With low forage stocks on many farms, the priority will be for an early turnout as soon as conditions allow and growing as much grass as possible, because there is nothing to fall back on. With fertiliser prices so high, it will be tempting to reduce nitrogen rates - but without considering the other factors that make grass grow this can be a risky strategy and result in less grass being grown. The result would be a failure to secure sufficient grazing for the summer and forage for the winter ahead."

 However, as the factsheet details, there are ways to ensure the nitrogen put on is used efficiently by the crop, potentially allowing some reductions in nitrogen rates. In the short term, this might mean addressing a phosphate or potash issue and considering applying sulphur, while in the longer term consider the opportunity for increasing the proportion of perennial ryegrass in the sward or using red clover for silage leys - this is always assuming that the pH level is correct.

Click here for a copy of the factsheet.   

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