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Maximising your nitrogen application on farm

Getting the best out of every kilogram of nitrogen applied on farm is not only desirable but necessary from a financial and environmental perspective and Dr Richie Hackett from Oak Park, Teagasc joins Michael Hennessy on this week’s Tillage Edge podcast to explain more.

He told Michael that the rainfall over winter, in almost all years, is sufficient to wash nitrogen through the soils leaving little reserves in early spring.   As soils warm up (and if there is sufficient water) soils nitrogen will be released and become available to plants.  The amount will vary from year to year even in the same soil.

Richie explained that there are two main areas to get right to ensure the nitrogen used is efficient.  Firstly, only apply nitrogen to the crop when it needs it or apply at the correct timing, and secondly, match the amount applied as closely as possible to the crop demands.  This can be difficult to do but knowing your soils and good records from previous years can help in getting the rates correct.  

For more episodes and information from the Tillage Edge podcast go to: teagasc.ie/thetillageedge
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