Nutrient offtake calculation
It enables a quick calculation of the phosphate and potash offtakes by most UK crops at harvest. Enter the crop details and yield in the top section and it will show the nutrient offtakes on the bottom lines. These quantities are often termed ‘maintenance dressings’, and usually provide the recommendation for fertiliser use when the soil Indices are at target level (with some exceptions, such as potatoes). If the soil Index is above the target level a fertiliser dressing may be reduced or considered unnecessary. The cost of such maintenance dressings should of course be charged to the crop being grown.
Nutrient deficiency correction
If soil Indices are below the target level the second section of the Calculator provides a guide to the quantity of nutrient which is likely to be required to correct the deficiency. This will vary according to the level of deficiency and the soil type. The quantity will usually be more than can reasonably be applied in one season, and the Calculator asks by how much and how quickly you want to correct the deficiency, i.e. over how many years. The desired improvement can be input by Index or more precisely by mg/litre as determined by soil analysis. Once all relevant information has been input (for one or both nutrients) the results will provide a guide to the total quantity of nutrient(s) which will be required. The annual dressing is also shown, according to the timescale selected. The bottom line shows this annual deficiency-correcting application, together with the maintenance dressing. The cost of the nutrient(s) required to correct the deficiency should not be charged to the crop being grown but should be accounted for separately.
It is important to read the notes attached to the Calculator.