Implement the 4Rs
4R Nutrient Stewardship represents an innovative approach to fertilizer best management practices (BMPs). The 4Rs imply there are four aspects to every fertilizer application and it provides a framework to assess whether a given crop has access to the necessary nutrients. Asking “Was the crop given the right source at the right rate, at the right time, and in the right place?” helps identify opportunities to improve fertilizer efficiency and prevent nutrient movement from each field.
To learn more, please download our brochure: Implementing 4R Nutrient Stewardship on the Farm Right Now
Right PLACE Articles
- Placing Fertilizer with Seed Placing fertilizer in-furrow with the seed during planting is a common practice in small grain production and to some extent in row crop production. Placing fertilizer with the seed can be an effective and beneficial management practice, but over application and mismanagement can result in seedling damage, and ultimate stand and yield loss. The type of crop, fertilizer source, row spacing, and soil environment all affect how much fertilizer can be safely applied with seed.
- Spring Nitrogen Planning for Optimizing Winter Wheat Production To optimize wheat production, the right fertilizer plan is needed in the spring. Wheat acreage in the Southeast rose again in 2012. Following a significant increase in acreage from 2010 to 2011, the 2012 crop was up another 8% to 4.7 million acres. This is the highest planted area in the region in the past five years. The Southeast is not known as a major wheat producing region, but yield potentials are good with good management, averaging 63 bu/A across the region.
- Nitrogen Loss Pathways - Which is Yours? The well-known poem by Robert Frost, “The Road Not Taken”, kindles our imagination about the richness of life gained by taking the less traveled paths. While it may seem a far reach, this “less traveled path” metaphor also pertains to you and the N nutrition of your plants; whether you are a professional turf or crop manager, or a hobby horticulturalist.
- Management Zones For Variable Rate Application Addressing the specific challenges and opportunities of individual crop production units, rather than using a “blanket” approach, requires both agronomic knowledge and technical expertise but the pay-off is significant for growers as well as the consumers they serve.
- Subsurface Tile Drainage Management Without underground (subsurface) drainage, the incredible bounty of some of our most productive agricultural land would be dramatically compromised. Tile drainage can transform poorly drained fields, facilitating timely planting in wet springs, increasing rooting depth, and dramatically increasing crop yields.
- Fertilizer Incorporation Raises Efficiency Bar Placing nutrients where they are most beneficial to the plants they’re intended to nourish can help prevent nutrients from escaping into the environment. Correct fertilizer incorporation is an example of how farmer and societal interest coincide — farmers invest in fertilizer to efficiently feed crops and accomplishing that goal helps prevent those same nutrients from negatively impacting surface and groundwater resources.
- Soil Sampling Enhances Crop, Maximizes Fertilizer Use The primary purpose of soil sampling is to get an idea of what the nutrient level of your soil is. Plus, proven methods of soil sampling are essential to develop an accurate fertilizer recommendation. Soil samples provide a representation of the ability of the soil to supply nutrients to meet crop needs throughout the growing season, as well as support your desired yield. In other words, if you don’t know what nutrients are available and in what amounts, your fertilizer application will be off. A precise soil analysis can result in more efficient fertilizer use, increased yields, lower costs and reduced environmental exposure.
- Starter Fertilizer – Why It’s Done The use of starter fertilizer is a management practice with an extensive body of scientific studies supporting its use.
- Soil pH and the Availability of Plant Nutrients The role soil pH plays on the right source, the right rate and the right place.
- The Role of Spatial Variability in Nutrient Management Because conditions in any single field may vary, so should your fertilizer application rates.