Teagasc Report: Considerations on Soil Sampling FindSexyJobs

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Now is a good time to plan soil sampling requirements for 2023 and have results in time to plan fertilizer requirements.

As part of the conditionality, the prohibited period of application of chemical fertilizers and manure is an ideal opportunity to collect soil samples for the whole farm.

While managing the appropriate timing of fertilizer or slurry application can be challenging for some farmers for various reasons such as weather conditions or supplier availability, under no circumstances should fertilizer or slurry be spread during a restricted application period.

Primarily because there is little or no crop uptake, nitrate will leach into groundwater in free-draining soils and P will be lost through surface runoff.

The quality of the fertilization plan depends on proper soil sampling, which includes sampling to the correct depth of 10 centimeters every two to four hectares and taking separate samples from areas that differ in soil type, previous harvest, drainage. or persistently low returns.

Information on soil pH, lime, P and K indices will enable targeted application of slurry and selection of fertilizer that has the correct balance of nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium and sulphur.

Wait three to six months between P and K fertilizer applications and taking fresh soil samples.

For non-exempt farmers and farmers stored in GLAS below 170 kg N/ha to remain compliant with nitrates, the original soil samples taken, unless they are in date for 2022 or replaced by a new set of soil samples, P index 1, 2 and 3 plots returned to P index 3 and P index 4 plots will remain at P index 4 until the end of the GLAS 2022 extension year.

From 1 January 2022, all farmers above 170 kg N/ha must take soil samples.

If soil samples are not taken, an index of 4 is assumed for phosphorus.

From 1 January 2023, all farmers above 130 kg N/ha must take soil samples.

If soil samples are not taken, an index of 4 is assumed for phosphorus.

All arable land sown from 1 January 2023 must have soil samples taken. The results of the soil samples will allow the consultant and the farmer to adjust the fertilizer schedule for the coming year to match the needs of the soil and the crop.

The number of soil samples to be taken and the number of years between samples will depend on whether you are a nitrate exempt farmer or not and this should be discussed with your advisor.

Your soil sample analysis will show the amount of lime needed depending on the soil type, soil pH and crop type.

In any case, a maximum of 7.5 tonnes/hectare can be claimed and the rest can be claimed after two years.

The recommendations given in the soil test report should always be compared to the estimate of the total amount of fertilizer for the farm according to the nitrate regulations.

There are instances where the full P recommendation may not be permitted by regulation on the farm, so it is important to check before purchasing or applying fertilizer.

Knowing the soil fertility status on a farm, field by field, is the starting point for controlling fertilizer costs.

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