HROC (agency) - Kubota
22 October 2016 | Online since 2003
Less co2 Limited

FarmingUK Logo
26 February 2013 10:54:33 |

Bad weather prompts nitrogen soil fears

High levels of rainfall and the continued bad weather in the first months of 2013 have left many farmers concerned about the level of nitrogen losses that may have occurred.
Some advisers are recommending that more nitrogen be applied, as a matter of course, but with ammonium nitrate at around £300/t the cost of applying extra nitrogen cannot be ignored.
Targeting additional nitrogen applications to those fields which actually need it makes good economic sense.
Nitrogen losses will mainly come from leaching but where soils have been waterlogged or even under water for long periods denitrification may also occur.
According to Sean Stevenson from analytical services specialists, NRM, "The exact extent of nitrogen losses through leaching and/or denitrification following heavy or sustained rainfall can be hard to quantify."
"It is the nitrate form of nitrogen that is susceptible to loss though leaching and denitrification so the extent of any loss is governed by the amount of the crop nitrogen supply that was in the nitrate form when the rainfall occurred."
Other factors also influence the extent of nitrate losses, application timing, soil characteristics the type of nitrogen fertiliser and so on.
In general leaching losses are more likely on sandy soils and denitrification more apparent on medium and fine textured soils that have poor drainage.
However the only way to be sure of how much nitrogen is in the soil is to conduct a soil mineral nitrogen test.
Stevenson explains further: "Soil Mineral Nitrogen is the nitrate-N plus ammonium-N content of the soil within the potential rooting depth of the crop."
"When estimating the total amount of N that will come from the soil – that's the Soil Nitrogen Supply (SNS) – you also need to include an estimate of the N already in the crop and an estimate of the mineralisable soil N. A test is also available from NRM to determine this mineralisable value.
"Once you have your SNS index you can use The Fertiliser Manual (RB209) to determine the correct fertiliser nitrogen recommendation."


0 Comment


Please enter your name


Please enter your email

Please enter valid email


Please enter your comment

Post Comment

Your comment has been submitted successfully. Please wait for admin approval.


No comments posted yet. Be the first to post a comment

Australia | 21 October 2016
Local bloc seeks to counter bid for Australian cattle empire

Nationalist lawmakers have teamed up with local ranchers to try to counter a bid involving Chinese buyers for the S. Kidman & Co. cattle empire, in what would be one of Australia’s biggest agribusines...

USA | 21 October 2016
Arizona farmers give back by donating milk to food banks

43 million gallons of milk have been dumped in fields across the country since the start of the year. That's why many American farmers have been forced to do with lower milk prices not bringing in...

USA | 21 October 2016
Your groceries may be cheaper, but farmers and supermarkets feel the pain

If you’re just a little irked that gasoline prices have edged up recently, maybe this will cheer you up: Groceries are a bargain. Average supermarket prices fell 2.2% in September from a year ago, ...

Canada | 21 October 2016
Farmers fail to rally to tax revolt talk

If farmland property taxes are too high, don’t pay them. That’s what Dugald farmer Edgar Scheurer suggested while commenting on Facebook about Manitoba Co-operator stories on skyrocketing farmland ...

United Kingdom | 21 October 2016
Woman killed in cattle attack on family farm

A woman has been killed after she was attacked by cattle on a family farm in Co Derry. The pensioner, who has been named locally as Brigid McKeefry and is aged in her 70s, was rushed to the Causewa...

Trending Now


Top stories you may have missed