Know the N-Loss Pathways to Fine-Tune Nitrogen Management

N becomes unavailable to plants several ways. Which pathway is most likely on your fields?
Do you know how N is most likely to be lost from your fields?

Do you know how N is most likely to be lost from your fields?

Do you know the most likely way your farmland loses nitrogen? (Now would be a great time to review all the ways N evades being used by the plant. Check out the image in this post).

Why does this matter? For one, putting down fertilizer that’s simply lost to the water or air is just plain expensive, not to mention wasteful. But there’s also increasing pressure on and scrutiny of farming practices in relation to water quality — minimizing nutrient run-off has always been important, but if it hasn’t been a large focus of your nutrient management planning, it should be now.

In this audio interview, Dr. Cynthia Grant, with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, explains how farmers can assess fields on a case by case basis and how knowing the most likely way nitrogen is lost is a key factor in minimizing its loss. What’s more, Grant explains when crops really begin to draw nutrients, and how understanding your soil and topography can save you real money in the short and long term.

If you can’t see the embedded player, click here to hear this interview.

 

Lyndsey Smith

Lyndsey Smith is a field editor for RealAgriculture. A self-proclaimed agnerd, Lyndsey is passionate about all things farming but is especially thrilled by agronomy and livestock production.

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