As weather conditions mean delayed (or in some cases zero) drilling over winter, Yara are seeking to lead the conversation on optimal nutrition and the right farming tools to beat difficult spring conditions at this year’s LAMMA trade show.
Ensuring adequate crop nutrition is a vital step for efficient growth on farm, but especially important during a particularly challenging period, says Natalie Wood, Arable Agronomist at Yara.
“Growers are facing increasing pressure to deliver target yields and quality, so making use of the right tools and products is especially important when facing challenging conditions in spring. There are actions and choices you can make right now to get off to the best start possible next year, despite the difficult weather conditions.”
To highlight the invisible prevalence of crop deficiencies, Natalie highlighted the recent results of a grain nutrient benchmarking scheme, which took place over the last two years, based on 252 samples. Analysis showed multiple deficiencies across the board:
73% deficiency in N, P or K
83% deficiency in one or more remaining nutrients
71% of wheat samples were below grain guideline levels for phosphate – the most common deficiency recorded in the samples.
If not properly managed, nutrient deficiencies can hinder growth, leading to results far behind where they should be. This can easily go unnoticed in many cases, as the yields might be adequate but, ultimately, not reaching their full potential.
Nitrogen use efficiency is also a common concern. Greater demands both in and outside the industry to improve sustainability have created a drive for reductions in emissions, alongside other measures such as promoting increased biodiversity in the soil. The difficulty is managing these improvements while, at the same time, trying to achieve the best possible results in order to meet requirements.
Improving results while limiting emissions and preserving soil health is a daunting prospect, but not impossible. Key to this is creating a holistic farm management programme. Rather than viewing these numerous issues as individual challenges, consider them as interrelated and dependent on one another. By adopting the right products or tools that work according to a farm’s individual circumstances, it becomes possible to recover lost yield potential and ensure greater biomass and sufficient nutritional levels once the climate allows. Seizing this opportunity, in anticipation of the difficult period ahead, can help sidestep additional problems and establish a solid baseline on farm for the year ahead.
“If you’ve had to delay or skip drilling altogether this winter, taking control of factors you can influence in the spring is crucial for ensuring a great start to the year ahead,” adds Natalie. “By viewing crop nutrition as an interlinked solution – a complete foundation for efficient crop nutrition – you’re positioning your farm to succeed in the year to come. Difficult winter conditions are inevitable, but your response to them can make a huge difference.”
With sustainability becoming an increasing concern both in and outside the industry, the big question facing the farming industry is this: how can we produce more to feed the world, while remaining a profitable business and reducing environmental impact? At LAMMA, Yara will be on hand to support and advise farmers on how they can achieve greater growth, both now and in the future.
Visit Yara at LAMMA in Hall 10 (Stand 800) to speak to the expert team, test digital farming tools, or learn what beneficial changes you can make on your farm.