Soil Fertility and Management

Information on soil fertility and management of agronomic crops, including quality assessment and conditions such as crusting, compaction and rill erosion. Tips on levels of nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus, crop rotation and no-till yields.

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Manure storages that capture runoff from barn roofs or other impervious surfaces are likely to fill up sooner than expected due to the extreme rainfall this summer. Image credit: Charlie White
Manure Management When Storages Fill Up Sooner than Expected - News News
With the extreme rainfall over the last month, some farms may need to start emptying manure storages sooner than normal. Here are some points to consider when doing so. More
Flooding around your home and on the farm could be leading to issues you need to address. Image Credit: Jennifer Fetter
After the Flood – Recovery Considerations for Rural Pennsylvanians - Articles Articles

After the Flood – Recovery Considerations for Rural Pennsylvanians

Jennifer R Fetter, Leon Ressler, Andy Yencha

Parts of Pennsylvania were drenched with heavy rains and flooded streams recently. In addition to drying out wet basements, there are few important things that rural Pennsylvanian’s might want to pay special attention to. More
Nitrogen deficiency in corn, characterized by yellowing along the midrib of the lower leaves, starting at the leaf tip and moving towards the stalk. (Image credit: Charlie White)
What is the Potential for Nitrogen Losses from Extreme Summer Rainfall - Articles Articles
The severity of nitrogen losses from extreme summer rainfalls, and how you react to them, depends on many factors. More
Ponding in soybean field. Credit: Claire Coombs
Where Does the Water Go? - Articles Articles

Where Does the Water Go?

Claire Coombs

With all the rain in May and June, and higher than normal soil moisture levels, one can start to wonder where all the water could be going? More
Potassium deficiency on this corn crop is exhibited by yellowing and necrosis of the leaf edges in the lower part of the canopy. Image credit: Jeff Graybill
Scouting for Nutrient Deficiencies - Articles Articles
Regular visual inspections, paired with tissue testing, soil sampling, and some help from eyes in the sky, can help diagnose nutrient deficiencies in a growing crop. More
Upcoming Events for June 27th
Upcoming Events for June 27th - News News

Upcoming Events for June 27th

06/27/2018

Field Day Announcement: Penn State Hemp Research Field Day, Southeast Research and Extension Center, August 7, 2018 More
Overgrazing pastures compromises pasture production and exposes the soil to erosion
Avoid Overgrazing Your Pastures - Articles Articles

Avoid Overgrazing Your Pastures

Justin Brackenrich, Sjoerd Willem Duiker, Ph.D., CCA

The summer is upon us and cool season grasses are slowing down their growth. This is the time to pay attention so you don’t overgraze those pastures. More
Corn in wet areas of this field is suffering from a nitrogen deficiency due to early season nitrogen losses. Photo credit: Charlie White
Is Your Nitrogen Still There? - News News

Is Your Nitrogen Still There?

06/06/2018

With the cool and wet weather in many parts of the state, you might be wondering whether the nitrogen you applied to corn this spring has been lost. More
Photo Credit: Sjoerd Duiker, Penn State Extension.
Managing Soil Compaction Caused by Small Grain Silage Harvest - Articles Articles
Small grain silage harvest can cause soil compaction when the soil is wet. This can have negative effects on the following corn crop. More
Photo 1: Manure injection in early May in western Chester County, PA. Twenty-foot wide toolbar supports injectors that are spaced 24 inches apart. Photo credit: Leon Ressler, Penn State
Manure Injection in PA Gets a Boost with National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Grant - News News
Newly awarded grant will be used to cover the cost difference between injecting and surface applying manure. More
Hairy vetch, rye, annual ryegrass, and clover cover crop being grazed. Photo Credit: Sjoerd Duiker, Penn State University
Grazing Crop Residues and Cover Crops - Articles Articles

Grazing Crop Residues and Cover Crops

Sjoerd Willem Duiker, Ph.D., CCA

Grazing has been largely excluded from our croplands but is receiving new interest as an additional profit center for farmers as well as a way to improve soil. More
Photo Credit: Claire Coombs, Penn State Extension.
Preventing Sidewall Compaction - Articles Articles
With all this rain, patience can be tough but it is important to wait for good planting conditions to avoid sidewall compaction More
Urea granules treated with a urease inhibitor. Photo credit: Charlie White
Will Your Nitrogen Stabilizer be Effective? - Articles Articles
Nitrogen stabilizer products are valuable management tools to prevent losses of N fertilizer and increase N use efficiency by the crop. Knowing how these products work will you help you maximize their effectiveness. More
Photo Credit: Sjoerd Duiker, Penn State Extension.
Repairing Erosion Damage and Protecting Your Fields - Articles Articles

Repairing Erosion Damage and Protecting Your Fields

Sjoerd Willem Duiker, Ph.D., CCA

Reports have come in about concentrated flow leading to rills and gully formation over the winter. How can you repair that and avoid it from happening again? More
Photo Credit: Sjoerd Duiker, Penn State Extension.
Threat of ‘Incidental Transfer’ of Manure to Streams - Articles Articles
With soil profiles being fully recharged with water and future runoff, creates the threat of ‘incidental transfer’ of nutrients and dissolved organic carbon from surface applied manure to streams and sinkholes. More
New growth on alfalfa. Photo credit: Creative Commons CC0; Pixabay.com
Assessing Your Alfalfa Stand this Spring - Articles Articles
As alfalfa breaks dormancy this spring, take time to evaluate the condition of your stand. Is it good enough to keep? More
Sheep grazing in pasture. Credit: Creative Commons CC0; Pixabay.com
Frost Seeding Time is Here - Articles Articles
Are your pastures looking a little thin? Now is the time to consider frost seeding as an option to thicken forage stands. More
Assessing Wheat Stands for Yield Potential and Nitrogen Application Timing
Assessing Wheat Stands for Yield Potential and Nitrogen Application Timing - Videos Videos
This video shows how to assess wheat fields for plant population and to determine when to top-dress nitrogen in order to stimulate plant growth and use nitrogen efficiently. More
Photo credit: Dwane Miller
Outstanding Lineup Slated for the 2018 PA Forage Conferences - Articles Articles
Visit with industry professionals and farmers and enjoy the day listening and learning about educational topics pertaining to forage production! More
A field must have greater than 25% crop residue cover or a cover crop to be eligible for winter manure spreading, along with other restrictions. Photo credit: Charlie White
The Do’s and Don’ts of Winter Manure Spreading - Articles Articles
If winter manure spreading is absolutely unavoidable, follow these requirements to do it legally. More
Frost Seeding of Pastures
Frost Seeding of Pastures - Articles Articles
Are your pastures looking a little thin? Read about frost seeding as an option to thicken forage stands. More
No-till Tobacco Planting, Photo credit: Jeff Graybill
No-till Innovations in Tobacco - Articles Articles

No-till Innovations in Tobacco

Jeffrey S Graybill

New No-Till equipment helps Tobacco farmers reduce soil erosion. More
Manure Fertilizer, Photo Credit: Nicole Santangelo, PSU
Is Your Farm Ready for Inspection? - Articles Articles
By the end of 2018, 1 in 5 Pennsylvania farms within the Chesapeake Bay watershed will have been visited by the Chesapeake Bay Agricultural Inspections Program. More
No-Till Innovations in Tobacco
No-Till Innovations in Tobacco - Videos Videos
Learn about no-till tobacco production in Lancaster County PA. More
Can I Apply Potash in Winter?
Can I Apply Potash in Winter? - Articles Articles

Can I Apply Potash in Winter?

Charles White, Nicole Santangelo

Ensuring properly timed potassium applications where they are needed when conditions permit. More
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