Crop Nutrition

How are nutrients redistributed after windrowing?

Concentrating stubble into windrowed strips affects subsequent crop production, soil testing and fertiliser decisions. Wayne Pluske (Equii), Ryan Walker ( Apal Laboratories) and John Young (Wyening Mission Farm) looked at nutrient redistribution post-harvest. They measured plant material (dry matter as t/ha) and nutrient content of canola and wheat crops. The […]

Help shape the future of BFDC lll

A review of the Better Fertiliser Decisions for Cropping Systems in Australia database is set to commence with a series of industry consultative meetings over the next three months. The BFDC database contains yield response curves for many crops, nutrient applications and soil types across grain growing regions and has been […]

Will late N applications be worthwhile?

Growers in some lucky regions are now considering late, in-crop applications of nitrogen. Crops in Western Australia, south-west Victoria, and parts of Tasmania still have above average yield potential. Given current grain prices, the economic reward from late N application to these crops is likely to be high. But late […]

Six articles to help manage crop nutrition in the dry

The dry weather will impact crop plans for this season and next. Here’s a few resources to help make crop nutrition decisions. Managing a crop: In tough conditions, crops do better with potassium What to do with a failed crop What nutrients are lost when making hay from failed crops? […]

The triple threat of wind erosion

Dry weather has meant many growers did not put in a crop this season. Crops that have gone in have struggled to establish. This has left extensive areas of bare soil exposed to wind erosion. Wind erosion is not always a big dust storm. Sometimes large particles roll across the […]

Soil sampling to boost profit with variable rate technology (VRT)

Variable rate technology (VRT) means matching fertiliser or soil amendment rates to soil types, fertility, and yield potential. Trials in Western Australia  (WA) showed a gross margin increase up to $50/ha using VRT. Costs might stay the same but resources are better allocated. This can translate to improved yield. Because […]

Why should you use a lab with ASPAC certification?

Without tests, crop nutrition is best guess. Plant and soil testing guide best practice on the farm. But who guides best practice in the lab? What is ASPAC? The Australasian Soil and Plant Analysis Council (ASPAC) has an inter- laboratory proficiency program (ILPP). Certification under this program means a lab […]

What is the DGT Phosphorus test and when should you use it?

The Diffusive Gradient in Thin-films (DGT) Phosphorus is an alternative P soil test. Colwell-P can overestimate available P on calcareous soils, and acid gravel soils. How does the DGT test work? The DGT is a cylindrical plastic device that uses an iron oxide gel as a P-sink, which attracts available […]

How soil inversion can turn the tables on soil constraints

Soil constraints stop crops from growing as well as they might. Yields are often lower than expected from paddocks with soil constraints. In Western Australia, some soils are both non-wetting and have subsoil acidity. Soil mixing or inversion can tackle these constraints at the same time. Soil mixing and inversion […]

Why should you keep good farm records?

Detailed records on crop nutrition help growers and advisors: Plan fertiliser applications Farm records feed into nutrient budgets and future fertiliser decisions. Nitrogen budgets rely on soil test data, yield, and grain protein estimates. Yield and protein expectations are often informed by records from previous, similar seasons. Review performance How […]