Increasing the quality of your alfalfa stand

FORAGE GROWER EXTRA – Written by Kelli Boylen

Planning your alfalfa plantings up to two years ahead can help your stand be more successful, says Brian Lang of Iowa State University Extension.

He recommends doing a soil test two or more years before planting alfalfa. If the pH is lower than 6, lime should be applied at least a year before planting.

Soil testing should also be done for P and K. (Consult your local university extension office for recommended levels.) Fields that test in the optimum range would then be fertilized based on P and K crop removal. Fields testing lower would be fertilized at a higher rate, and those testing higher would not need fertilizer until those levels drop back to the optimum range.  continued

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