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PDA News

The PDA publishes both technical News items and shorter Blog items. PDA News provides the latest up to date information on macronutrients and their use, while blog items are shorter and timelier.

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Establishment and Waterlogging

Establishment is the most critical period in any annual crops life-cycle, as it is the time when the yield potential is set. All challenges the crop faces during the season serves to reduce the final yield from this potential

November 2023

Potash Nutrition of Cereals

The latest PDA news highlights the benefits of potash for cereal crops. Cereal crops need at least as much, if not more, potash than any other nutrient. Potash controls cell sap content to maintain the turgor of the plant and supports the movement of all materials within the plant. Potash supply is thus essential for all nutrient uptake by the roots and movement to the leaves for photosynthesis, and for the distribution of sugars and proteins required for plant growth and grain fill.

September 2023

Potash Effect on Straw Strength

With cereal harvests finished, or drawing to a close for another year, consideration should be given to the input decisions made during the year before it is too far in the memory and blurs into all the rest!

August 2023

Impact of Catch and Cover Cropping on Potassium Cycling

Cover and catch cropping form an important cog in the arable regenerative farming wheel, helping to provide soil cover at times when no plants would otherwise be growing, and providing the living roots after harvest to help feed bacteria and fungi that form part of the food web and maintain soils in a healthy state.

July 2023

Harvest Nutrient Sampling

With combinable crop harvest fast approaching (or already underway for some areas) it may be worth considering options for monitoring success or limitations with input decisions and soil management practices to close the feedback loop.

June 2023

Focussing on the Nutrition of Maize

Whether grown for animal silage, AD feedstock or grain, appropriate fertilisation is vital to the success of the maize crop because it greatly influences not only the yield of the crop and its nutritional content but also growing costs.

May 2023

2021/22 Season Review

Looking back at last season with robust soil and crop analysis data is a fantastic means of assessing how the season went and determining how to improve performance for the coming season with insightful management decisions.

March 2023

Spring Potash Applications

For those who chose to hold off applying potash in the autumn, the recent dry weather and good field conditions may prove an opportunity to catch up on any missed applications.

February 2023

Plant Potassium Measurements

The Fertiliser Manual (RB209) makes recommendations for Phosphate and Potash based on the Index system. This has proved to be the most efficient means of ensuring soils have sufficient available nutrient to optimise crop growth each year, however this one-off assessment may need monitoring to ensure this remains the case for each specific soil type and across the years between sampling and even within fields.

December 2022

Nitrogen Use Efficiency (NUE)

The optimum rate of nitrogen for a crop will depend on many variables, one of which is the efficiency of use. This can vary greatly depending on several factors, including the weather conditions around application, the state and health of the crop and particularly its root system, the product being applied, and the availability of other nutrients.

December 2022

Impact of pH on nutrient availability

When it comes to crop nutrition, soil pH must be considered the starting point, as the availability of all nutrients are affected by the pH of the soil. The optimum availability of most plant nutrients occurs around a neutral pH of 6.5 to 7, however the optimum pH for soils will vary depending on the soil type and the cropping.

October 2022

Pink straw: High potash or something else…?

A defining memory of the 2018 cereal harvest must be the colour of the straw. Social media was alive with pictures of pink looking crops. Rumours followed regarding the reasoning behind this, with higher potash levels coming out on top. Laboratory tests identified higher than average potash levels in the crop residues, further strengthening these theories. So the mystery had been solved. Or had it…

August 2022

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