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  1. #1
    Super Star Member EddieWalker's Avatar
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    Default When to Fertilize?

    Its still too early to plant anything for the spring, but I'm wondering if now would be a good time to spread ferilizer and let it soak into the ground? Same thing with some ag lime.

    I have a soil report from a few years ago, so I'm going to pick up another sample bag from my extension and send it off real soon so I can see what I need. I'll also ask them there, but I've found that the ladies in the office don't know and the guys who do, are never in the office.

    I usually do it when I disk and plant my spring food plot with the thought that it will be good for the fall. I'm not sure what I'm going to plant, but I'm going to add a bunch of wildflowers to the mix so I can get some pictures of them when they bloom.

    Any thoughts?

    Eddie

  2. #2
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    Default Re: When to Fertilize?

    Depending on the lime you are using it can take considerable time to breakdown and work often years.

  3. #3
    Veteran Member vtsnowedin's Avatar
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    Default Re: When to Fertilize?

    Plus one on lime now. The fertilizer depending on what you are planting should probably go on in two applications. One at the time of planting and a second when the plants are well sprouted and ready to put out a lot of green leaves. If you put it on now a lot of it may get washed away or evaporate wasting your time and money.

  4. #4
    Gold Member SLHawkins's Avatar
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    Default Re: When to Fertilize?

    Eddie,
    I have been asking the same question too. Now that I have come across a decent lime spreader I am ready to spread and was wondering if it was a good time to do so. I intend on planting an alfalfa and timothy mix come spring. The advice I got from the folks at John Deere Landscaping was to go ahead and fertilize (it can be done anytime of the year). You want to put it down in enough time before planting so that it can be absorbed by the soil. They recommended that I spread the lime then disk or plow it in. Unless it is really dry, or really wet, you should be ok with letting it soak into the ground without being blown or washed away. My recommendation though would be to either disc it in, or fully turn it into the soil with a plow.
    Hawk
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  5. #5
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    Default Re: When to Fertilize?

    Eddie, do you need lime on the old report, if so have you put any out yet? I only ask because our area usually isn't to Lime deficient. I'd get my soil sample then take their recommendations. If lime is called for, I'd do that part yesterday.

    You might get an AG agent quicker if you call the office and request a visit, thats all I have ever done. When their out of the office, they are usually at someones place, might as well be yours. Depending on what you plant, legumes mostly, double check with the agent or seed supplier and find out the effects of the nitrogen on the legumes, some like Alfalfa like to produce their own (N) and can get "moody" if over done.

    Knowing what you want to plant when you send it your sample will help them "tailor" more to your specific crop requirements.

    I would put out my recommended fertilizer just before the last time you disc, right before you plant. Nitrogen soaks in fast and also gets depleted fast, but the Phosphorous and Potassium get through the dirt much slower, so getting it in the ground gets it to the new root faster.

    I think you on the right track with your thinking (getting the sample 1st) I'd get that ball rolling and get the agent on his way, in the end he will be the best "boot on the ground" with the Tyler area his specialty.
    Dennis


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  6. #6
    Veteran Member robbyr's Avatar
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    Default Re: When to Fertilize?

    So what you guys think happens if spread fertilizer granules on ryegrass and then dont get a rain for a week or two? Will it just sit there and wait for moisture or end up being a waste of money? Also same question for later on when applied to alicia bermuda.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: When to Fertilize?

    Around here our soil if very acidic and the saying is "anytime is a good time to lime". As Art said it takes awhile, I've always heard up to 6 months, for lime to help adjust the PH so earlier is better than later. You are lucky if you have a spreader that will handle ag lime. It is much cheaper than pelletized lime.

    MarkV

  8. #8
    Super Member
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    Default Re: When to Fertilize?

    robby, I think the most you could loose is a little nitrogen, especially if you use a liquid type fertilizer. I think the granules would do you just fine, the Nitrogen is , for lack of a better word, more "soluble". If you ever put out dry fertilizer without rain, you can usually see the Nitrogen disappear (breakdown) in a few days, even a light dew helps with that. I've waited 3-4 weeks before for rain on my hay fields, not optimal, but didn't loose much.

    As far as your Bermuda, it wont start growing real good until the temps get close to 80*, so now wold probably be to early, 1st of March in Central Texas was when we put it out when I was haying.

    Dont know if you really want to fertilize rye grass though, that stuff will almost grow on concrete Kidding of course, but it is very easy to grow
    Dennis


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  9. #9
    Veteran Member sam5570's Avatar
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    Default Re: When to Fertilize?

    Quote Originally Posted by robbyr View Post
    So what you guys think happens if spread fertilizer granules on ryegrass and then dont get a rain for a week or two? Will it just sit there and wait for moisture or end up being a waste of money? Also same question for later on when applied to alicia bermuda.
    ok this is what the old timer's told me for year's until i became one.you can put the fertilizer on anytime but the nitrogen willnot activate till the ground warm's up.ok this something to keep in mind if the temps are warm and you think ok i'll get a head start and put my fertilizer on now and the crop start's to green up then you get frost later on it burn's the tip and stun's the groth. it;s just a chance you take. i have been told all my farming life never put lime and fertilizer down at the same time. the lime we use here takes a year to have any afect on the soil we always put it on in fall. my brother work's for a lime company they ship it all over the world they have developed a lime that will give you the fast results like fertilizer does but get the wallet ready because it's expensive.just thought you might want to know. and your area is much diferent than here but our best results have been lime in the fall and fertilizer in the spring after the frost is over.

  10. #10
    Super Member radioman's Avatar
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    Default Re: When to Fertilize?

    I'm gonna add my 2 cents. My biggest issue is that when people are planting grass, they get warning about when to add fertilizer. So they dont pay attention why not. I think its the herbicide that is part of the fertilizer mix that is bad when seeding grass or anything. It will prevent the seeds from sprouting. If you get the right kind of fertilizer and no herbicide or weed killer in the mix, you should be fine.
    I think timing is everything. If you know what you are planting and it warm enough to sprout and you havent added amendments to soil yet - liquid might be the way to go. If you are just trying to get a jump on things and you can spread stuff now without making a mess in dirt with the tractor weight, its probably best to use solid stuff to spread with. I know I cant do anything now nor early spring due to type of weather we get here.

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