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Monday, July 27, 2015

Illinois Nutrient Loss Reduction Strategy

Illinois is implementing a voluntary nutrient loss reduction strategy.  The strategy was developed by the Illinois Department of Agriculture, the University of Illinois, The fertilizer industry, and commodity groups active in Illinois.  The purpose of the strategy is to reduce nitrogen and phosphorous entering the hypoxia zone in the Gulf of Mexico. You can help to implement the strategy by applying phosphorous and potassium according to soil test indications.  You should consider applying nitrogen according to the Nrate calculator.  In season nitrogen tests and chlorophyll sensors are practices that might be useful to make in season corrections.

Another key to reducing nutrient loss is reducing soil loss on your farm.  High residue levels and no-till are very effective in soil loss reduction.  Sediment basins, grassed waterways, and filter strips can also be useful in keeping nutrients on the farm.  Safe manure handling is also part of the strategy.  It is time for farmers to get serious about the strategy to avoid further regulation.  A lot of environmentalists are saying it can't be done.  We all need to work together to prove them wrong.  

1 comment:

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