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:
- Foliar N products
Suggest more you are interested in.