Farmwest Blog

October UPDATE to Manure Spreading Advisory #3 2013: South Coast Region

Field-stored solid agricultural wastes (except vegetation waste) must be covered from October 1 to April 1, inclusive. See Manure Spreading Advisory #3 (released Sep 3, 2013) for more information about how weather conditions and other factors influence manure applications.

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Cool Forages - Advanced Management of Temperate Forages 2013

What the experts are saying ... "… what an absolute delightful take on forages!" ~ Perry Miller, Montana State University; "Outstanding!" ~ Matt Sanderson, Research Leader, USDA-ARS

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Manure Spreading Advisory #3 2013: South Coast Region

* Perennial grasses continue to benefit from fall manure applications when applied to meet crop nutrient needs. * Manure applications for cover crops and newly seeded grasses should be based on a soil test and only applied if the cover crop will become well established to uptake nutrients prior to the end of the growing season. Manure applications on harvested or fallow fields are not recommended. * Manure should not be applied within 8 meters of ditches or watercourses. Buffer width should be increased for slopes greater than 5% and/or if the potential for runoff exists. * Consider wind speed and direction when applying manure and how it can have a negative impact on your neighbors. The wind can also increase ammonia loss and soil loss through erosion. * Reminder that field stored solid agricultural wastes (except vegetation waste) must be covered by October 1.

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COOL FORAGES - PREFACE: Are Forages Green?

The perceived ‘greenness’ and sustainability of forages is not without merit. More than anyother crop, forages are protective of the environment, thanks to massive root systems, long periods of growth and year-round ground cover. Forages shield the soil against salinization and degradation by erosion and subsidence. In fact forages, more than any crop, build soils by furnishing abundant carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) from their ample roots, and even more so if livestock waste is returned. Forages provide for an elaborate and diversified soil ecosystem and food web, replete with both small and minute soil organisms, by enhancing soil structure, conserving nutrients, and nourishing with carbohydrate exuded from roots, and indirectly from applied manure. Forages protect the freshness of streams and lakes by reducing surface runoff and leaching. They may reduce emissions of greenhouse gases such as nitrous oxide and carbon dioxide by sequestering C and N, and they improve air quality by reducing dust emissions that often come from tillage and wind erosion. Forages also emit a pleasing scent to the air, and provide nectar and pollen for beneficial insects. Forages may reduce the need for pesticides and mineral fertilizers. And, finally, forages provide feed and habitat for birds and wildlife. Natural grassland biomes (defined broadly) occupy 40% of the land surface of the earth (excluding Greenland and Antarctica) in the form of savannahs, prairies, steppes, cerrado and pampas (www.fao.org). And a new forage biome, of sorts, has emerged world-wide in recent centuries, comprising anthropogenic (seeded) grasslands that have often replaced forests and natural grasslands. Managed grasslands with high residency compared to natural grasslands feed many of the ruminants that provide humans with meat, milk, recreation, power and materials. Managed grasslands are also used by a variety of wildlife and, occasionally, by ‘free ranging’ pigs and chickens.

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August UPDATE to Manure Spreading Advisory #2

Well planned manure applications are acceptable on most forage crops and/or well-established grasses. Do not spread manure on berry fields between flowering and harvest or on vegetable fields after planting. It is recommended that manure applications be planned to meet the crop nutrient requirements throughout the growing season and ensure storage facilities are as close to empty as possible by next fall. It is the producer’s responsibility to apply manure in a manner that will not create runoff to surface water, to off-field locations, and/or leaching below the root zone. Do not apply manure prior to significant rain events or on wet or saturated fields. Application rates should also be reduced when applying manure on very dry soils as they may be more susceptible to run off or on cracked soils as the channels increase nutrient infiltration below the root zone. Maintain a minimum buffer distance of 5 meters from wet watercourses and ditches or 3 meters from dry watercourses and ditches during summer.

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July UPDATE to Manure Spreading Advisory #2

Re: Update to Manure Spreading Advisory #2 2013: South Coast Region

Date: JULY 2, 2013

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COOL FORAGES Advanced management of temperate forages - TABLE OF CONTENTS

Price: $60. For multiple copies or educational purposes, please inquire ... pfca@farmwest.com

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June UPDATE to Manure Spreading Advisory #2

• For properties prone to Freshet flooding, please check the river forecasts prior to any manure applications. http://bcrfc.env.gov.bc.ca/ • Well planned manure applications are acceptable on most fields that are seeded, will be seeded within two weeks, and/or well-established grasses. • It is recommended that you plan manure applications to meet the crop nutrient requirements throughout the growing season and ensure storage facilities are as close to empty as possible by next fall. • It is the producer’s responsibility to apply manure in a manner that will not create runoff to surface water, to off-field locations, and/or leaching below the root zone. • Do not apply manure prior to significant rain events or on wet or saturated fields. • Maintain a minimum buffer distance of 5 meters from wet watercourses and ditches or 3 meters from dry watercourses and ditches during summer.

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May UPDATE to Manure Spreading Advisory #2

Well planned manure applications are acceptable on most fields that are seeded, will be seeded within two weeks, and/or well-established grasses. It is recommended that you plan manure applications to meet the crop nutrient requirements throughout the growing season and ensure storage facilities are as close to empty as possible by next fall. It is the producer’s responsibility to apply manure in a manner that will not create runoff to surface water, to off-field locations, and/or leaching below the root zone. Do not apply manure prior to significant rain events or on wet or saturated fields. Maintain a minimum buffer distance of 5 meters from wet watercourses and ditches or 3 meters from dry watercourses and ditches during summer. Refer to Manure Spreading Advisory #2 (released April 2, 2013) for more information.

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Manure Spreading Advisory #2 for 2013: South Coast Region

Well planned manure applications are acceptable on most fields that are seeded, will be seeded within two weeks, and/or well-established grasses. Avoid manure applications on wet fields and/or saturated soils. It is the producer’s responsibility to apply manure in a manner that will not create runoff to surface water, to off field locations, and/or leaching below the root zone. Do not apply manure prior to significant rain events. Continue to check your storage areas to ensure you have enough manure storage to hold the average expected precipitation plus account for any potential increased storage circumstances such as excessive precipitation. Please read the entire advisory for details and important information to assist in the decision-making process for manure application(s) and storage.

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