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AICC Advisors and farmers testing appropriate nitrogen rates and strategies for reduction in light of current high prices. 

Brought together by the FarmPEP FIP project

Ideas for reducing N fertiliser rates - share your ideas here.

With the current high N fertiliser prices there is interest in testing how much farmers should cut back, and whether any of the range of N efficiency products on the market can help in reducing N rates without reducing yields. 

AICC advisors working with groups of farmers the proposed plan is to:

  • on two tramlines within a field apply 50kg less than their normal applied N rate (or 50kg more if the field N rate has already been reduced in response to prices).
    • Ideally do this at an early application so that the impacts of reduced N can be seen on the crop through April and May
    • Ideally have replicate treatment areas within the field
    • Use past yield map data, past aerial imagery and current satellite imagery to choose tramlines in fields where sensible comparisons can be made (see Farm Trials Guide for guidance)
  • in one reduced-N tramline (or ideally replicated) use an N efficiency product as directed by the manufacturer. (Candidate products listed below).
  • Through April and May monitor the crops, taking photos, using N Tester if available (or simple leaf colour chart?) to assess for N status.
  • Visual assessments by satellite can easily be made at www.datafarming.com or a range of other platforms.
  • At harvest get grain samples from the different areas by hand before combining, or if practical, whilst harvesting. Submit samples for grain nutrient analysis.
  • Harvest treatment areas carefully, ideally using yield mapping, to maximise the number of full header widths in each treatment (see Farm Trials Guide for guidance). 
    • Weigh grain from different treatments over weighbridge if yield mapping not available
  • ADAS will help interpret yield map data through its Agronomics process 
  • Share results within and between groups through the season, and in autumn discuss and come to conclusions, and plan for following season.

 

Through the Farm-PEP project ADAS aims to develop the tools to help the process of establishing, monitoring and analysing on-farm trials.

 

Comment and discuss these plans below.  Each regional Group of farmers can be set-up as an individual Group on PEP, to share plans and results.

Candidate N efficiency products for Groups to test are:

  • Efficient-28
  • Utrisha
  • Foliar N products

 

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