Soil is where life begins, that’s why it is so important to keep it healthy. Without a health base, how will you get a healthy yield from your soil? Fear not as we have 4 top tips to keep your soil in tip-top form. To ensure soil health is maintained, farmers must ensure that they nurture an environment in which there is a healthy number of beneficial organisms while minimising the risk of pests. The soil must include high levels of decomposed organic matter that allow it to retain both water and readily leachable nutrients, thereby alleviating the negative effects of drought. It comes down to the farmers to ensure that this fragile ecosystem is maintained. We have some techniques that help farmers keep soil healthy and productive:
Cover crops are grown to protect and enhance the soil they are planted in. They are commonly known as “green manure” since at the end of their growth cycle, as they die off they are used as nutrients. A cover crop helps protect against water and wind erosion. The leaves of cover crops protect the soil from heavy rainfall reducing nutrient runoff. Their root systems also help stabilise surface soil during heavy winds. Planting cover crops can also serve as a way to control weed growth. It serves as a physical barrier that suppresses weed seed germination. They are all around a fantastic way to protect and enrich your soil.
A buffer zone does exactly what it says on the tin, in this case, it separates areas of land, adjacent to bodies of water such as streams and lakes, where farmers plant strips of permanent vegetation between fields. Buffers slow the flow of water and facilitate the trapping of sediment, organic matter and nutrients. These nutrients are critical for the growth of micro-organisms that are vital for a healthy ecosystem. Other benefits associated with buffer zones include protecting water quality and reducing soil erosion. This makes for a cost-effective way to keep your soil in top condition.
Use of Biosolids
There are many benefits to using biosolids, it can have a huge impact on the soil’s fertility. Biosolids basically are organic fertilizers resulting from treated wastewater that contain essential plant nutrients and organic matter. Biosolids have been proven to enhance the physical and chemical properties of agricultural soils. Better soil, better yield! By replenishing organic matter that is depleted over time, you can be looking at an increase in productivity. Compared to inorganic fertilizers, the organic nitrogen and phosphorus found in biosolids are absorbed better by crops since these plant nutrients are released slowly throughout the growing season. They are also less water-soluble and increase the soil’s ability to absorb and store moisture. The use of biosolids is helpful to reduce the farmers’ production costs since there is less need to purchase commercial fertilizers. Biosolids are often sold at a lower price, and some countries even offer them for free.
Did you know that Claydon customers have reported a reduction in wind and soil erosion since converting to the Opti-Till® system? Earthworm populations have also thrived, soil structure improved and organic matter increased. Read more about our customers here.
We are a farming family who have been growing crops since the early 1900s. We also manufacture crop establishment machinery which reduces input costs, maximises yields and improves soil health. We have customers that span the UK and over 30 countries worldwide. We are very proud that we have farmers across the world using our Claydon System on their farms. If you would like to find out more about us or any of the products that we offer, get in touch today. You can fill in a contact form online or call us on +44 (0)1440 820327.