News ways to measure nitrogen in soils and use nitrogen fertilizer more efficiently will be highlighted during a 4R nutrient management tour June 28 in the Miami and Carman areas.
“We will be looking at some very cool things,” University of Manitoba soil scientist and Canada Research Chair in Applied Soil Ecology Mario Tenuta said in an interview June 16.
4R refers to applying the right source of fertilizer, at the right rate, at the right time and in the right place.
It’s a timely topic given the worldwide effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions because of their link to climate change and the Manitoba government’s plan to tax carbon emissions.
A GreenSeeker will be demonstrated. It’s a hand-held device that measures how green plants are, to help farmers determine how much nitrogen to add in season.
There will also be a demonstration on measuring nitrate soil levels in the field instead of having to send samples to a laboratory for testing.
“That’s another tool to assess how much nitrogen you have in the soil for precision farming and for determining the right amount of nitrogen to apply in season,” Tenuta said.
“We will be talking about the new enhanced fertilizers and discuss if they are worth using and when you would use them and why you would use them.
“We’re looking how to get more protein from these high-yield, spring wheat varieties that we have now.”
Farmers, crop consultants, students and “anyone willing to ask questions” are invited. The tour, which includes a hot lunch, is free, but participants must RSVP Tenuta by email only ([email protected] toba.ca) by June 25.
Speakers include Tenuta on 4R management and how greenhouse gases are collected for analyses, Manitoba Agriculture’s John Heard will demonstrate in-season nitrogen testing in corn, Pioneer Seed dealer Adam McKnight will demonstrate soil nitrate testing, Amy Mangin of the University of Manitoba will discuss ways to get higher protein levels in new, higher-yield wheats and Double Diamond’s Steve Barron will talk about different types of nitrogen fertilizer.
Continuing education credits will be available to attending Certified Crop Advisers.
The tour starts at 9 a.m. at the Five Corners. (From Miami, Man., go three miles west on PTH 23, then turn north on PR 240 and go four miles. Watch for signs.)
The event ends with lunch at the University of Manitoba’s Carman research station.