SOYL newsletter April 2017
1. Peak season for N, P and K applications
Managing variation in fields to enhance soils, boost yields and maximise return on every hectare has never been more important. Spring is a busy time as growers take to their fields to apply nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium products, but understanding where variations lie is vital to making informed decisions and saving substantial costs on inputs.
With extensive data on soil indices, nitrogen levels and crop yields, SOYL can identify trends and place benchmarks to increase accuracy on farm. Advances such as creation of variable maps based on crop yields are now available, making the application of P and K based on how much came off each part of the field even more precise.
Using soil sampling data or satellite imagery obtained through the SOYLsense variable rate nitrogen service, SOYL’s applications team creates recommendations for variable nutrient applications.
To find out more about nutrient mapping, speak to your local SOYL contact or call 01635 204190.
2. Plan ahead to optimise seed rates
Creating a variable rate seed plan involves conducting a detailed electrical conductivity survey which informs soil type maps. MySOYL’s seed rate calculator can then be used to confirm rates and export files to your chosen system, including directly to SOYL’s iSOYL application system for iPad.
This approach suits both winter and spring crops, as the base establishment map created for a winter crop can be adjusted for spring establishment. Without winter kill to reduce viable plant growth, establishment figures for spring crops can be increased to suit warmer drilling conditions, enabling quicker establishment but with the same benefits of managing seed rates according to where crops germinate best. Rates can also be adjusted to help with black-grass control.
To find out more about SOYLseed, speak to your local SOYL contact or call 01635 204190.
3. Manage crop growth to maintain margins
Rapid crop growth is now occurring due to nitrogen uptake and managing your canopy is crucial to boost yields, make decisions on applying valuable nitrogen fertiliser where it will be most effective and reduce lodging risks at harvest to maximise margins.
Crop reactions to nitrogen applications can be monitored using satellite imagery of cereal and OSR canopies in your fields with the variable rate nitrogen service, SOYLsense. NDVI (normalised difference vegetation index) imagery makes it possible to determine the state of growing crop canopies and by calibrating for leaf area index using ground truthing, SOYLsense provides accurate crop biomass levels. This indicates where nitrogen has been taken up and where variable applications are needed to level crops out.
Variable rate nitrogen maps are then generated by the SOYLsense team, in your own farm office or even in the field to be uploaded to your application device. The SOYL support team is always on hand to assist with both hardware and software queries and to advise on applications.
To find out more about SOYLsense, speak to your local SOYL contact or call 01635 204190.
4. Success starts in your field
Accurate data is essential to the success of precision techniques and now is one of the busiest times of year for collecting this data from the field.
All SOYL services rely on some sort of in-field activity, whether soil sampling for PK applications, scanning for variable seed or ground truthing for nitrogen leaf area indices. At the moment, SOYLsense calibrators are out in various locations across the UK every day of the week measuring cereal canopies or cutting and weighing OSR to establish canopy values so that calibrated maps can be generated for LAI. SOYLseed ground truthing by our soil scientist team is also underway and with a record area of PK sampling under their belts already, the soil sampling team is still out in fields getting the last cores taken for growers.
SOYL’s experts are crucial to achieving the best results for your business. To make sure your farm is fulfilling its potential and making the most of the services available, speak to your local SOYL contact or call 01635 204190.