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June 26, 2023: Crop Solutions That Work AGRIS Biweekly Newsletter


Digital Corner

The winter wheat harvest is fast approaching we will likely begin wheat harvest as early as first week of July with peak activity during the second week. Having a harvest and post-harvest plan in place can help manage resources and optimize crop yield and quality. Once wheat reaches physiological maturity nothing good happens after that growth stage. With an eye toward weather forecast and being prepared to harvest at higher moistures may preserve grain quality. If you have plans for double crop soybeans, a few days gained by early harvest positions that soybean crop with a chance for greater success.

Post harvest wheat is a great time to have soil sampling done. Capturing and sharing yield maps provides a layer of insight to guide soil sample sites to best represent nutrient distribution across the field. This in turn supports the 4 R approach of variable rate applications to match crop removal as well as to build up the weak areas in the field with low soil test values and adjust soil pH as needed.

Tremendous variability in the wheat field below with an average of 107 bushels per acre ranging from a low of 82 to a high of 128 bushel per acre. Based on crop removal this represents an application range of phosphate of 95 to 147 pounds of MAP per acre. Applying a fixed rate of fertility of 123 lbs. of MAP under applies on 22 acres or 25% of the field and over applies on 28 acres or 32% of the field while only 43% of the field receives the right rate. A core principle of 4 R nutrient stewardship of applying the right rate in the right place is not optimized when using a fixed rate. 


Yield maps are also used to produce a profit map. A different layer of information to help focus on production constraints that may impact on income.

Reach out to your Crop Sales Specialist, they are making plans to address fields that need current soil samples. Let them know when harvest is complete and we can organize the soil sampling activity. 4R Stewardship requires using soil test no older than 4 years to make balanced nutrient recommendations. 

Article by Dale Cowan


Fertilizing Your Hay Fields

A good hay crop starts with current soil tests, properly interpreted and a balanced nutrient application strategy. Many pasture and older hay fields need a current soil test. With the price of hay today, a current soil sample that addresses the need for essential nutrients including lime applications can go a long way to optimize production and nutritional value.

We need to start treating our hay and pastures like a high producing field crop.

A good fertility program can help take advantage of good weather and reduce the impact of less than cooperative weather on both yield and quality. Fertile fields utilize water resources more effectively.

Soil sampling now and getting ready to apply needed nutrients after subsequent cuts is a good practice to follow.


Our recommendation strategy follows a build, maintain and drawdown approach to nutrient management. When soil test values are low chances are essential nutrients are limiting growth and therefore, we increase the application rates to build soil test levels up at rates higher than crop removal. If soil test results come back at target levels, then we simply match crop removal values. If soil test values come back from the lab on the high side, then we can reduce rates to compensate and not have any fear of losing yield. The program we use is designed to make sure the nutrients are neither too low or excessive. It gives you peace of mind that our nutrient program can support desired production levels and you never have to lay awake at night and wonder what your yield could have if you just used a little fertilizer.

Hay crops in general remove large quantities of phosphorus and potassium per harvested ton. A mixed grass legume stand yielding 5 ton per acre can remove as much as 100 lbs. – 150 lbs. of mono ammonium phosphate (MAP) and 330 – 500 lbs. of muriate of potash (0-0-60). 

The most over looked nutrient at present is sulphur. Most legumes and mixed pasture stands can use up to 25 to 30 lbs per acre of sulphur from sulphate sources. 

Fertilization is a good investment in the hay crop not only for yield but also potentially to improve hay quality especially protein and minerals. Let’s start with current soil tests to determine the nutrients in greatest need and tailor a nutrient program to address those needs on your farm and your fields. At today’s hay prices, knowing what is needed will help meet your production goals.

Ask your AGRIS sales team for a recommendation based on current soil tests.

Happy Baling!

Article by Graham McLean


Soil Sampling After Wheat Harvest

Before you know it, wheat harvest will be under way. Once harvested what plans do you have for your wheat stubble? Cover crops? Double crop soybeans? Drainage? Hopefully soil sampling. Summer is a great time to get soil sampling done, as ground conditions are usually favorable for such activities as well as operations like spreading lime and fertilizer. 

Soil sampling is the key to good agronomy and optimizing yields, and has become increasingly important for several reasons, such as the environmental, economic, and social aspects surrounding the 4 R nutrient stewardship and management practices we have adapted. Different soil properties and the challenges that come with them are unique to each field, it is important to identify them. Having site specific sampling performed is required to accomplish this, as the samples need to be geo referenced to guide equipment for specific applications that may be needed.

There are several methods that can be used to set up soil sampling. Each farm is unique, and sampling can be arranged to best suit the needs of your fields. We can create zones using harvest data to identify opportunities to do grid sampling, with varying degrees of detail, or by using SOIL OPTIX technology to take things a step further.

Achieving optimum yields requires attention to all thedetails. To know what you are working with, an up-to-date soil test isrequired. After wheat harvest is a great time to get this done, and AGRISis ready set up and perform the soil testing you need, as part of the wholefarm plan. Get in touch with your AGRIS Crop Sales specialists toarrange your 2023 soil sampling today.

Article by Mike Veenema

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