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Showing posts from January, 2018

New Research Shows Increased Yield with Liming Treatments

Jeff Vetsch, Soil Scientist When needed, liming materials can be major beneficial inputs for crop production in Minnesota. When soils are acid, lime will neutralize the soil to the ideal pH. pH can affect the availability of plant nutrients and impact microbial activity, so managing it can be of great benefit, but can also cost a lot. Here’s a look at what to consider before liming your agricultural soil.

Jan. 18 & Sauk Centre Hay Auction Summary

by Dan Martens, Extension Educator, Stearns-Benton-Morrison Counties, Crops Focus, 320-968-5077, This is a catch up effort. I'm listing the January 18 Summary, History and Graph and then also listing links to a few recent auction that I have not posted for the late fall season. I am including a couple of related notes and resources. Click on individual items to see the. 1. Jan. 18 2018 Summary - All tested loads sold, groups based on hay and bale type and quality. 2. History of Selected Lots . Averages from recent years, and summer and fall sales so far. 3. Graph of Selected Alfalfa hay groups.            The 2017-18 season is the RED line. 4. Nov. 16, 2017 Summary 5. Dec. 7, 2018 Summary 6. Dec. 21, 2018 Summary 7. Jan. 4, 2018 Summary   MFA Winter Forage Workshops are being planned again for:       SE MN January 30- St. Charles Community Center       Central MN January 31- Shady's Tavern in Albany       NE MN February 1 - The Event

Nutrient Management Podcast: Soil pH and Liming 101

Starting with the basics, this episode of the podcast is your guide to managing soil pH on the farm. Melissa Wilson, John Lamb and Dan Kaiser discuss how fertilizer and manure affect soil pH, what makes a good liming material and why we should care about soil pH in the first place.

University of Minnesota Soil Testing Lab Completes Renovations

The University of Minnesota's Soil Testing and Research Analytical Lab has undergone a $3 million renovation. The lab is now has fully modernized infrastructure and work space to fulfill the soil testing needs of the state.

Your Guide to Soil pH and Liming

On this episode, Dan Kaiser, John Lamb and Melissa Wilson talk about soil pH. What is it? Why is it important? How do you change it? How does fertilizer affect it? What about manure? Find out all these answers and more  For more the latest on nutrient management, follow us on facebook at or Twitter at

Five Tips for Profitably Managing Sulfur

Daniel Kaiser, Soil Fertility Specialist Sulfur is becoming increasingly important to crop production in Minnesota. Soil organic matter is a large storehouse for sulfur, but we still run into situations where the crop needs fertilizer S to maintain high yields. Here are five tips for getting the most out of sulfur applied to your fields:

Rye Cover Crops in Corn Production on Irrigated Sands

Natalie Ricks and Fabián Fernández In Minnesota, approximately 500,000 acres of irrigated farmland are highly productive but susceptible to nitrate leaching to groundwater. Irrigated sandy soils are especially vulnerable to leaching. A recent study from University of Minnesota, with support from Pope County SWCD and the Minnesota Department of Agriculture, evaluated the use of winter rye as a cover crop in corn production. Early results show that a rye cover crop can help reduce nitrogen leaching in a corn after soybean rotation by 45 percent.

Minnesota-specific dicamba training and use requirements

Natalie Hoidal, Tana Haugen-Brown, Dean Herzfeld, and Dave Nicolai An estimated 10,000+ Minnesotans will use Monsanto, DowDuPont, and BASF’s new dicamba products this year. All individuals applying XtendiMax™ with VaporGrip™ Technology (Monsanto, EPA Reg. No. 524-617), FeXapan™ with VaporGrip™ Technology (DowDuPont, EPA Reg. No. 352-913), or Engenia™ (BASF, EPA Reg. No. 7969-345) dicamba products must undergo special product label-required training in order to comply with Minnesota Pesticide Control Law. Because these products are now Restricted Use Pesticides, all applicators of these products must also be a certified Private pesticide applicator or a licensed Commercial or Noncommercial pesticide applicator.

Evaluating the Need for Sulfur in High Organic Matter Soils

Daniel Kaiser, Soil Fertility Specialist Approximately 95 percent of the total sulfur in soils is found in organic matter. As soil organic matter breaks down, the S in the organic form mineralizes to sulfate-sulfur, the only form that plant roots can absorb. While we have an understanding of how sulfur reacts with crops, there still is a lot we don’t know about the forms of sulfur in soil over the growing season.