Crop Nutrition

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Category: Sowing

Keep K in soils to alleviate stress

At a recent GRDC Regional Cropping Solutions Network open forum at Morawa in Western Australia, Dr Richard Bell from Murdoch University spoke of the importance of potassium (K) for optimal plant growth and alleviating crop stress. Low soil K is common in the sand and duplex soils of WA cropping […]

Insights from N rich and poor strips

Tom Batters and his colleagues from AGRIvision Consultants, Swan Hill, Victoria have been using nitrogen-rich test strips (N-rich strips) informally for many years.  Last season they took a more formal approach and followed the test strip progress with photos and NDVI images. The strips are a real time, low-cost visual […]

Sow close to the row to boost crops after a dry year

On-row or edge row sowing means sowing a new crop immediately alongside or in the previous crop row. Grain crops are usually sown inter-row (between the old crop rows). On-row sowing for phosphorus On-row sowing can make use of last year’s phosphorus (P) fertiliser. Phosphorus is not a very mobile […]

How to adjust phosphorus after a dry year

A poor or failed crop last season will affect nutrient budgets this season. Cereal hay removes about 1–2 kg of phosphorus (P) per tonne of dry matter. Canola removes about 3 kg of P per tonne (see Table 1). Table 1. Comparison of nutrients removed in grain, straw, canola hay, […]

Chicken manure improves sandy soils

Chicken manure is helping to ameliorate sandy soils on South Australia’s Yorke Peninsula. Trial results over three years indicate that high-rate surface applications combined with deep ripping are delivering the highest marginal returns. Positive results The marginal returns from applying chicken litter (or a comparable, inorganic fertiliser), and deep ripping, […]

Research into mid-row banding benefits continues

In 2016, Agriculture Victoria researcher Ashley Wallace conducted mid-row banding (MRB) trials in Victoria. These were part of the GRDC/Agriculture Victoria Regional Research Agronomist program.The trials compared MRB nitrogen fertiliser in-crop to other application methods. MRB is when fertiliser is applied in concentrated bands below the surface to every second […]

Use tissue tests to detect deficiencies

Micronutrients or trace elements are an essential part of crop nutrition. They are as important as the better-known macronutrients nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. This was a key message on the southern tour of the MPCN II Roadshow in August 2016. Scott and Jillian Vaessen farm at Tabbita in southern NSW. […]

New way to gauge nutrient status

Nutrient Rich Strips are not new in cropping. They are used to see if there is a clear growth response to an applied nutrient. But it is often hard to quantify the response and translate it into fertiliser rate recommendations. Some fertiliser advisors are using a new tool to address […]

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 […]

Does incorporating lime boost fertiliser response?

Does addressing soil constraints change crop nutrition requirements? DAFWA researcher Craig Scanlan runs field trials in central and northern WA. The trials investigate links between soils, seasons and crop nutrition. The focus is how incorporating lime affects yield response to fertilisers. Soil mixing to treat water repellent soils is also […]

Help Australia day mungbeans get what they need

Some rain around Australia’s northern region saw some last minute mungbean crops go in. The GRDC Mungbean Grownotes suggests we base fertiliser recommendations on: soil test results fallow length yield potential paddock history. That’s comprehensive, but with an opportunity crop there’s not always the chance to cover all the bases. […]

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 […]