You can build it, or burn it! June 2017

Soil carbon that is; the very thing we rely on for our survival. Without it there is no plant growth as we know it, and as its being diminished, less nutrient and moisture is available for plant uptake. Any reduction in soil carbon levels, due to it being...

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What you may not already know, Dec 2016

A popular belief at present is that a concerted push to reduce the environmental pressure of intensive pastoral farming will mean less pasture grown, resulting in decreasing total farm production, smaller factories and associated infra-structure, fewer...

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The added value of dolomite this spring September 2016

There’s a school of thought seemingly prevalent among the science and farming communities in NZ that, although changes are required to soil fertility systems in order to stem further environmental damage, they can be made by tweaking the existing urea...

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Reducing Fertiliser-N dependency , April 2016

The collapsed dairy milk price and the downturn in sheepmeat export prices has caused a sudden flurry of promotion for good management of permanent pasture. The advice has emanated from all levels and related organisations, many of which had formerly been...

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Magnesium – the basis of good farm health Feb 2016

The last dolomite article contained the quote by the late Tom Walker, a past Emeritus Professor of Soil Science at Lincoln University, “It makes good sense to me to correct animal deficiencies through the soil and the plant.” When animal deficiencies are...

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How magnesium deficiencies can be sorted Jan 2016

Some things change over time, and others don’t, with one certainty being the daily demand for magnesium by dairy cows, particularly prior to calving. Without adequate daily intake of magnesium a wide range of health problems occur – at one end of the scale...

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A better solution than nitrogen July 2015

In years of low income, nitrogen sales rise relative to phosphorus, potassium, and sulphur inputs on the basis that nitrogen produces the cheapest supplementary feed. There’s an attitude that soil nutrients can be mined for a period of time and replenished...

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Magnesium – Cinderella of NZ Agriculture May 2015

“We can no longer afford to think in terms of N P and K; we must include S and Mg.” This statement is from an article titled, Magnesium – Cinderella of NZ Agriculture, written 50 years ago by M.R.J. Toxopeus a scientist at the Ruakura Research Centre. The...

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Dolomite – the only magnesium you’ll need April 2015

When a milking cow in spring runs short on magnesium, the cost incurred isn’t difficult to calculate.  In a worst case situation she dies, and the cost is the value of the animal, and her production during the coming season.  Should she die prior to...

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Why dolomite in autumn saves time and money, March 2015

In the past, when dairy income has been tight, withholding autumn fertiliser has been seen as a valid means of containing costs. But is it a sound option?  Farmers that spent less on feed last spring, without reducing animal numbers, are reporting fewer...

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