Topic: fertilizer

Give seeds the best chance in a dry start – how to avoid fertiliser burn

Seeds can be damaged by fertiliser placed too close or at too high rates. Dry soils increase the risk of harm to germinating seeds from fertilisers. Take extra care with fertiliser and seed placement this year. The dry lead in to 2018 winter sowing means last year’s strategy might not […]

How to protect your grain – prevent contamination

There have been a few cases of Australian grain being contaminated with chemicals after harvest. The chemical ended up on the grain through using the same trucks to move treated fertiliser and transport grain.
About 15% of Australian cereal crops use fungicide treated fertilizer. The fungicide flutriafol controls certain fungal […]

Soil sampling with banded fertiliser

Soil sampling paddocks with a history of precision placement of fertilizer requires special planning. Some elements, such as soil P, remain very close to where they were placed in the soil. Random sampling could give falsely high or low test results depending on how the sampling pattern intersects with the placement […]

How critical is the critical level?

Critical soil nutrient levels indicate whether a yield response to fertiliser is likely – or not. Their role is to help avoid unnecessary or uneconomic applications of fertiliser. Critical levels are used in interpreting soil test results to make fertiliser recommendations.
The critical level is the value required to achieve […]

Top up nutrients after a good year

Nutrients leave the paddock with the grain. A good yield means more nutrients go out and less remain in the soil. Some nutrients may need topping up to maintain yields.
How much topping up?
Different grains contain varying amounts of nutrients. The table below gives estimates of the nutrients removed in […]

Is nitrogen placement different north vs south?

Trials looking at placing nitrogen fertiliser into the soil have shown some different outcomes. In the southern region adding mid-row banding (MRB) to the crop nutrition toolkit looks interesting. A trial showed modest yield gains and better fertiliser uptake. In the northern region, rate looks more important than how nitrogen […]

How to account for stubble nutrients next season

Stubbles can be a source of nutrients for next season. Different crops grown under different conditions have varying amounts of nutrients in their stubbles. Nutrient budgets can consider the amount and type of stubble.
How much stubble?

Stubble loads can be estimated from grain yield and the amount of growth. For cereals, […]

How is extension for crop nutrition evolving?

Over 7000 people engaged with the MPCN Northern Region program in 2012 – 2015. The More Profit for Crop Nutrition (MPCN) program aimed to improve returns from fertiliser. The program funded research and extension on soil and crop nutrition. The e-Extension and Training projects integrated the latest advice. Growers and […]

How to manage nitrogen in no-till residues

Crop residues influence the supply and uptake of nitrogen (N). In the long term, residues will improve soil fertility. Stubbles can immobilise soil N as they break down. Moisture makes a big difference to the rate of stubble decomposition and mineralisation of nitrogen in the soil.
Nathan Craig was involved […]

Kick-start crops with compost

Compost can improve overall soil health and benefit crops. The organic matter may improve soil structure, infiltration and porosity.  The soil’s water and nutrient holding capacity may get a boost. Compost feeds the microbes in soil, which in turn increases soil fertility.
Compost and nutrients
Individual composts are different. The source […]