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Is Fall Applied Nitrogen Still There?

Last year's good fall weather enabled many farmers to fall apply at least some of their nitrogen fertilizer. Due to warmer than normal soil temperatures, denitrifying soil bacteria stayed slightly active throughout the winter. Fabian Fernandez, University of Illinois Soil Fertility Specialist, wrote a great explanation about the implications of this weather on fall applied nitrogen in the Bulletin. He indicated that if you used a nitrification inhibitor, your nitrogen should still be there. However, a larger than normal amount will have been converted from ammonium to nitrate. This is not a problem unless the spring turns wet and in Illinois that is always a possibility. I highly recommend checking out Fabian's article for the complete story.

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