As this year’s harvest draws to a close, farmers are already preparing for next year’s growing season — and experts are saying now is the time to test your soil.
Dr. Chris Augustin said that given the rising prices of fertilizer, you want to make sure you’re laying the right amount as laying too much or too little will affect the yield.
This year’s drought affected the response from fertilizer and soil tests that have already been conducted show nitrogen numbers as much as five times higher than a non-drought year, meaning more fertilizer was necessary.
Going into next year, Augustin says investing in a soil test will save the farmer money by producing more yield.
“It’s about 90 cents for a pound of nitrogen right now. And at 50 pounds of nitrogen that you’d be saving with that nitrogen credit, that’s 40 bucks an acre all of a sudden. And you throw that on 1,000 acres, that’s $40,000, that buys you a pickup,” said Augustin.
Prices for fertilizer have skyrocketed as of late, as much as double the price from this time last year.
For more information on how to get your soil tested, contact your local ag extension office.