Farmer Focus: Muck isn’t all magic


March was a busy month for us, with the dry climate getting all the pieces into gear. A damaged fertiliser spreader delayed the primary spring doses, however due to the sort climate we are actually caught up.

Spring muck spreading was accomplished with relative ease – no muddy roads and no messy crops the place slurry was utilized.

However, because the wheat has moved on, the sunshine and darkish inexperienced barcodes present the issues in my fertiliser-saving plans.

See additionally: Why blended farmer exited pigs to deal with agroecology cropping

About the creator

Charlie Cheyney

Arable Farmer Focus author
Charlie Cheyney farms greater than 480ha land in Hampshire in partnership along with his father. They run a blended arable and 450-cow dairy enterprise, rising cereal and forage crops on various soils, from chalk to heavy clay.

On paper it was all really easy, with costly bagged nitrogen being swapped for the abundantly out there slurry. But not like a bag of crisp white prills, slurry has a special actuality.

Lumps of silage that bind up macerators and block dribble bars, sand that settles in tankers and steep fields that heavy tankers simply received’t go up. Not to say variations within the product from daily.

The imperfection and untidiness of my wheat crop highlights how far more must be accomplished to get near the uniform outcomes that bagged merchandise ship.

However, the potential is there, with crops wanting stronger and more healthy the place the slurry is utilized.

We actually want a bit extra time to excellent the system and I used to be a bit relieved listening to Defra’s current announcement relating to autumn muck spreading.

Despite our greatest efforts, it might have been troublesome to don’t have any outlet for muck at the moment.

It would have put appreciable stress on storage and the next spring functions.

With the current push to make use of extra natural manure on farms as a substitute of losing it as we’ve been instructed we’re doing, my current makes an attempt spotlight that this isn’t an in a single day course of.

It will take appreciable time and funding for us to realize this, and I hope that is understood by policymakers.

It is obvious fields that obtained extra manure traditionally are notably higher performing, with extra fertile and extra forgiving soil, with the distinction being much less and fewer viable.

Going ahead, I feel we’re heading in the right direction. With the dairy producing giant quantities of slurry and manure, we’ve no selection however to make it work for us. As fertiliser costs soar manure is extra viable than ever.


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