Aim to have all fertiliser and slurry applied by April 8, or at least five weeks ahead of cutting date and make allowance for any slurry applied earlier in the year, advises writes CAFRE dairying advisers.
It is best, if at all possible, at this late stage, to allow a week between spreading slurry and fertiliser to reduce N losses.
The fertiliser rate should be a total of 100 - 120 kg N / ha (100 units per acre) allowing for any slurry N applied (Nine units N in 1,000 gallons of slurry).
P and K
Include P and K depending on soil analysis. If your soil analysis has shown low indices for P and K (1 or below), a compound fertiliser such as 27:4:4 will help to make up the shortfall in P and K. If the P index is above 1 then a zero P compound must be used.
All silage fields should receive Sulphur (S) each year at 30 - 40 kg/ha (24 – 32 units per acre).
Research has shown that there are yield responses to additional S in most soils - especially on sandy soils and where high N levels - over 100 kg N/ha (80 units/acre) are used.