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Discussion Board - Re: What analysis of fertilizer and how much

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MF Poor

01-31-2013 13:35:03

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Get an accurate soil test. Include micro nutrients. Also, get Cation exchange capacity. Then determine your target goals (as far as yields you're shooting for) THEN come back with those numbers, otherwise, you're just throwing darts in the dark at a moving target. Any numbers you get based on the very limited information you furnished will be a wild azz guess at very best.

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01-31-2013 13:58:28

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 Re: What analysis of fertilizer and how much in reply to MF Poor, 01-31-2013 13:35:03  
What does an average soil test cost? Not that it matters much, because I know it will pay for itself in the long run. But I"m curious.

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01-31-2013 14:50:43

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 Re: What analysis of fertilizer and how much in reply to JohnDeereGreen, 01-31-2013 13:58:28  
A test can run about $25, less or more, depends what you actually want tested.

The manure will help you out, so you shouldn't be in a bad situation.

If you are aiming for 140 bu corn, you'd probably want 100 to 150 lbs of N added, depends on what previous creop was, and how much manure you are adding.

Your 140bu corn will be removing 50 lbs of P, and 35lbs of K, so you'd really like to add that back in. Depends what youre manure adds back.

These days we don't get free sulfur from pollution any more, so 10 lbs of that is good. Perhaps your manure supplies that tho.


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MF Poor

01-31-2013 16:28:52

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 Re: What analysis of fertilizer and how much in reply to paul, 01-31-2013 14:50:43  
Watch ph level too. Manure, especially when applied regularly over several years can throw ph off....WAY off.

As I mentioned in earlier post, micro nutrients are very important. Zinc, boron, and as Paul mentioned, sulfur have been found to be vital in a plants ability to take up NP&K. And that cation exchange capacity I mentioned is the soil's ability to hold moisture. Low CEC will limit soil's ability to hold nutrients and therefor, effecting availability of nutrients for plants to use. You can apply fertilizer till the cows come home, and if the plant can't take in those nutrients, you just wasted a LOT of money.

Feeding a plant is like feeding a human....It takes a proper balance of ALL required nutrients to keep a person healthy.

From my experience, getting ph in range is the first thing I'd start with.

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01-31-2013 16:42:06

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 Re: What analysis of fertilizer and how much in reply to MF Poor, 01-31-2013 16:28:52  
I was at an organic seminar a few years back and one of the speakers was explaining soil samples. He told us that the cation reading was the most important reading in a sample. I rely alot on my organic matter also.

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01-31-2013 17:08:34

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 Re: What analysis of fertilizer and how much in reply to Animal, 01-31-2013 16:42:06  
Thanks for all the info guys! This spring I will get a soil sample too see where all the levels are at, and I will let you know and we can go from there.

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01-31-2013 17:35:28

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 Re: What analysis of fertilizer and how much in reply to JohnDeereGreen, 01-31-2013 17:08:34  
Yes, a rough rule of thumb is ground with a Cec of 15 can hold 150 lbs of N, so a low cec can limit the amount of fertilizer (organic, commercial, plow down, whatever) at one time. Some of the types on N will store longer, but as they convert to the plant useable stuff, the cec can only hold so much.

I forget about lime, my soils are 6.4 to over 8 so not an issue.... But low ph acid soils will latch onto the n, p, and k and not let the roots pry it loose, so ph is 2nd in line to get right.


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