UK Agricultural news
|Tuesday 28th July 2009|
Manure From Organic Dairy Cows a Viable Fertilizer
Manure has been used as fertilizer for agricultural soil since the dawn of arable farming, but recent research shows that manure from organic diary cows contains many more slow release minerals and plant nutrients than manure from conventionally farmed cows. The US study took manure samples from many different farms and tested them for concentrations of nutrients such as nitrogen, calcium, magnesium and phosphorous.
Organic dairy cows are generally fed on feeds grown on land fertilized with compost and other organic methods. It is believed that this natural cycle is what leads to the nutrients being so readily recycled. The slow release forms of nutrients found in the organic manure are more likely to be absorbed by crops, and less likely to be washed away by surface water.
With proper management, a system of organic manure fertilization can be applied at low cost to the farmer and also help with soil conservation. This system also helps reduce the amount of pollutants reaching nearby water sources. In addition, the dairy farmer has a ready source of fertilizer already on the land reducing the need to transport it in from an external source.