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- Annual forage crops include crops such as: wheat, barley, oats, millet, corn, rye, triticale, Italian ryegrass, canola, peas and lentils. Since there are a variety of annual crops that can be used for forages, fertility recommendations will be crop specific.
- Water and nutrients are the two most important factors controlling the growth of an annual forage crop.
- There are 20 elements that are needed for plant growth and a deficiency in any of these nutrients can limit productivity. There are eight commonly deficient nutrients. The major nutrients include: nitrogen (N), phosphorous (P, in the form of phosphate P2O5) and potassium (K, in the form of potash K2O). The secondary nutrients include: sulphur (S), magnesium (Mg) and calcium (Ca). The minor nutrients include: zinc (Zn) and copper (Cu).
- Soil test to determine availability of plant nutrients and to identify the soil nutrients that are inadequate.
- Nitrogen is the most limiting nutrient for annual forages. Base your nitrogen source choice on the cost per unit nitrogen, on availability and access to application equipment.
- Fertilizer recommendations should be based on averages from field and laboratory tests, and what works best under normal conditions. Under special circumstances, a crop or forage specialist can make more specific fertilizer recommendations.
- Yield goals should be considered and be based on farm historical rainfall information. Adjusting fertilizer rates based on realistic yield goals is essential to maintain environmental quality and to optimize economic returns.
- The best time to apply fertilizer is in the early spring when the plants begin to grow, taking care to apply the proper type of fertilizer mix.
- If conditions are dry at the time of seeding, provide appropriate amounts of fertilizer. If more precipitation is received and the potential for a larger crop is evident, consider top-dressing or broadcasting additional fertilizer after the crop has emerged.
Agronomic and Fertilizer Management of Barley in Alberta
Alberta Farm Fertilizer Information and Recommendation Manager
Alberta Fertilizer Guide
Annual Forage Crops for Manitoba
Barley Production in Alberta: Fertilizing
Copper Deficiency: Diagnosis and Correction
Crop Nutrition and Fertilizer Requirements
Guidelines for Safe Rates of Fertilizer Placed with Seed
Fall Fertilization - FAQ's
Fertilizing Spring-seeded Small Grains
Fertilizer Requirements of Cereals
Fertilizing Irrigated Grain and Oilseed Crops
Micronutrient Requirements of Crops
Nutrient Management Planning Guide
Pea Nutrient Requirements in Alberta
Phosphorous Fertilizer Application in Crop Production
Potassium Fertilizer Application in Crop Production
FAQ's and 4 R's of Nutrient Stewardship - Fertilizer Canada
Sulphur Fertilizer Application in Crop Production
Soil Sampling and Crop Nutrient Requirements - AB