t WEST MILLARD FARM SECTION FARM PROFITABLY WITH FERTILIZERS "SERVING THE PEOPLE OF DELTA AND THE GREAT PAHVANT VALLEY' Volume 51 Number 38 Thursday, March 23, 1961 Delta, Utah Copy 10c $4.00 a year in advance Range Fertilization Accepted in Next 15 to 20 Years It is reasonable to assume that within the next 15 to 20 years,, range fertilization will be an accepted ac-cepted practice in the management of many range lands. More intensive inten-sive management of our forage resources re-sources to meet the demands of our increasing populatioa for meat will, by necessity, require the application ap-plication of all of the known methods me-thods of improving the forage supply sup-ply and processing it into a marketable mar-ketable product. It has been estimated that the requirements for meat in the western west-ern states will increase 75 per cent during the next 15 years. If production pro-duction remains the same, the West will be importing beef and lamb from the eastern states by 19T5. Thus, if we are to keep pace with the demands, livestock producers must increase output. More intensive and more efficient effic-ient use of our range forage resource re-source is obviously the answer to this problem of increased demand for meat. Feed makes up about 80 percent of the cost of producing beef and lamb, and the more of this that comes from range forage the greater the efficiency of production. pro-duction. There are 4 to 5 million acres of foothill range lands in each state of the intermountain area that are now producing less than 15 their potential forage capacity. However, through control of undesirable plants and with the use of fertilizer ferti-lizer and good management, the full production potential of these areas can be obtained. In addition, there are 3 to 4 million acres of higher elevation or mountain ranges that can be expected to double or triple their present production pro-duction through the application of fertilizer alone. Benefits from the application of fertilizer on range lands have beer, found to occur through (1) in creased forage production, (2) in creased nutrient yield, (3) increased palatability; and (4) increased in-creased vigor of plants. INCREASED FORAGE PRODUCTION Application of nitrogen at 40 lbs. per acre on foothill ranges of Utah, where annual precipitation is about 12 Inches, increased dry matter yield as much as 500 pounds per acre. On mountain meadow range where annual precipitation ave rages 18 Inches, the dry matter yield was increased 2,000 pounds with the application of 40 pounds of nitrogen per acre. The carry over the second year as a result of fertilizing the pre vious year has varied from no additional ad-ditional forage yield to as much as 200 pounds per acre. INCREASED NUTRIENT YIELD During four years of research in Utah, it has been shown that the protein content of range forage is increased as much as Vs through the application of nitrogen at the rate of 40 pounds per acre. As much as 300 pounds of additional digestible diges-tible nutrients per acre have been produced on seeded foothill range and as much as 1,200 pounds additional ad-ditional digestible nutrients on mountain meadow ranges from the application of 40 pounds of nitrogen nitro-gen per acre. If we process as much as 60 per cent of this digestible nutrient increase in-crease by means of grazing animals we could expect from 30 to as much as 120 pounds of additional meat per acre from the addition of fertilizer. INCREASED PALAT ABILITY In six separate fertilization studies stu-dies on foothill and mountain ranges in Utah, it was found that the livestock preference for fertilized ferti-lized areas over adjacent unfertilized unferti-lized areas was pronounced. In all cases the fertilized areas were utilized uti-lized more than twice as heavily as the untreated areas. When 40 pounds of nitrogen per acre was added to seeded foothill ranges, the degree of utilization by cattle on the treated plots was about 80 compared to only 37 percent on adjacent untreated plots. The following fol-lowing year, with no additional fertilizer, fer-tilizer, the same plots were utilized to the extent of 61 percent on the treated and 28 percent on the untreated. un-treated. During the third year after treatment, no discernable difference in palatability between fertilized and unfertilized plots was noted. Herbicides and nitrogen fertilizer applied on mountain slopes in a liquid solution by plane increased the palatability of forage and there by drew animals onto slopes not normally frequented by livestock. Distribution of grazing animals on rough mountain terrain is a major problem In obtaining uniform utilization uti-lization on the range; therefore, the use of fertilizer may prove to be a valuable tool in better utili- s. I i 1 b 5 - i I I i & 1 , V " , - v f- - ! , c 1 ! ' , if 1 f 1m"J4 ' nwiiWTI WT1W1T IWIHI llliWilllWillitHwWIi Mill MiWiMlM "III1 iiHTI , A l.. - A 1 r v - 8 1 T.mmemmmsmmmmmsiiamm iivjw - t y-s,'"n. V. c 4 L 1' 1 H ".",3 The farmer who uses fertilizer in the W'fti sr.. in i' '! - It i 1, 4 ft i ' - . ' proper amounts realizes the highest in- f.Jcf.J farmer is an asset to his community 'K n because he is a prosperous neighbor;: j ana a good customer. v j Proper fertilization means increased f.sp; profits for the farmer and a healthy ft;- - i , j . x:i. r.u ii i i iil.. f i i' i 7j.A: fi'i lAaX' -vu- economy lor the community. , r v - ' ii - t v, r j ? -, ? Fertilizer in Soil, Water Conservation And Improvement The use of fertilizer is important in both erosion control and soil improvement. Fertilizer provides ef fective means of controlling soil erosion in two ways: 1. By promoting rapid and heavier growth of grass, cover crops and other vegetation. This is one of the most effective effec-tive ways to bind the soil, check water run-off and increase in-crease water-holding capacity. The dense vegetation and larger larg-er supply of crop residues resulting re-sulting from adequate fertilization fertiliza-tion help to improve soil structure struc-ture and develop a more ab-sotptive ab-sotptive surface soil. 2. By increasing crop yields on less erodible land. This reduces the need for growing cultivated crops on land subject to severe erosion. Such land can then be used for permanent grass and crops which check erosion. Many soils are already too low in plant food supplies for profitable crop production. Erosion now is controlled better than ever before but continues to deplete plant food supplies. Plant food losses from cropping and leaching, as well as from erosion, are continuous and require constant attention. Commercial fertilizer helps make up plant food losses and is one of the most effective means of Improving Im-proving soils of low natural fertili ty. This statement is supported by the National Planning Association in its publication "Fertilizers in the Postwar Economy." From this report re-port this significant statement is taken: "Even on soils of low natural fertility the use of fertilizers and other good management practices make possible a successful agriculture, agri-culture, especially where the area is suited to high-value crops that can pay for rather liberal applications applica-tions of fertilizers "It should be noted that under some conditions fertilizer may be used to secure an immediate increase in-crease in production. Numerous experiments ex-periments show that the yield of corn, cotton, hay or other crops may be Increased from 50 to more thart 200 per cent by one application applica-tion of fertilizer." Thus fertilizers play an important import-ant role in a good land management manage-ment program. zation on mountain ranges. INCREASED VIGOR OF PLANTS The use of fertilizer as a renovation reno-vation practice hojds great promise. The application of fertilizer on ranges where herbicides are used hastens the recovery of the range in addition to increasing forage and nutrient yield. Studies in Utah show that vigor of the vegetation is improved as shown by increased density and size of the grass clump, increased height and number of seed stalks, increased size of stems and leaves, and increased root yield. All of these benefits from fertilization fertili-zation axe complimentary and should be properly evaluated in a fertilization program before condemning con-demning or prescribing such a practice prac-tice in a rane management plan. Responses from the application of fertilizer are best realized where moisture is not limiting Therefore, areas receiving less than 12 inches of precipitation annually may show little or no response to the addi- LAUD Our Greatest Natural Resource The earth is a sphere 8,000 miles in diameter, 25,000 miles in circumference circum-ference with a surface of approximately approxi-mately 200,000,000 square miles of which about one-third is land and two-thirds water. A relatively thin layer of topsoil, which covers the land at an average ave-rage plow depth of about seven inches, is the chief support of life. The world's annual production of food and fiber products comes largely from this soil layer. Less than half of the earth's soils is suitable for crop production. The soil that supports life is created cre-ated by the forces of nature, the tion of fertilizer. Further research is needed before sound recommendations can be made for the many and varied range situations where fertilizer may appear to be beneficial. Economic Eco-nomic returns especially are lacking. action of the sun, atmosphere and water along with plant and animal life, on the materials that comprise the earth. Soil is a residue of weathered rocks, minerals and decaying de-caying organic matter. It supplies mechanical support for vegetation and raw materials for plant foods. Many, many years are required by nature to produce a single inch of topsoil. Yet, all of this good work of nature may be destroyed by man in a relatively few years by careless care-less land management. Our soil is the foundation of our happiness, prosperity and progress. Deeply rooted in the earth are our independence, our safety and the welfare of our people. America owes her position as a great nation to her soil and its produce. pro-duce. The power, weath and vigor of our people are directly due to the marvelous productivity of our land. We fought and won two great wars within 30 years. Our victories were due, in a large measure, to the food and fiber produced on our farms. During World War II, despite shortages of labor, equipment, and supplies, our farms produced the record-breaking food and fiber crops necessary to meet the demands de-mands of our people and millions in other countries. Today American agriculture is faced with the task of not only feeding and clothing an ever increasing in-creasing population at home, but furnishing large quantities of food for other rations. Our continued world leadership and influence will depend largely upon the stewardship steward-ship of our soil. With wise management, our land can be kept productive to meet the growing needs of our people. There are areas of land in this country which have been cultivated continuously con-tinuously for nearly 3(h) years, yet are still as good or better than before. be-fore. Most unproductive soil can be made useful by intelligent manage- Soil Classifications We have many kinds of soils due to various factors such as parent material, climatic conditions, vegetation, vege-tation, topography and age of the land. Each soil has a life history which can be compared to the periods per-iods of human life youth, maturity, maturi-ty, and old age with changes continuously con-tinuously taking place. Our soils have been classified into in-to great soil groups. These great soil groups are divided into soil series; the series into soil types and these in turn are further subdivided sub-divided into soil phases. Soil surveys of more than half of our farm land have been made by the Division of Soil Survey, US-DA, US-DA, in cooperation with State Ag- ment. Whether we own land or not, we are dependent upon the pro ducts of the soil for necessities of life and each of us has a vital concern in maintaining its produc tivity. Land Management Good farm land management consists of organizing and using all of the land on the farm in accordance ac-cordance with sound conservation principles so as to yield the maximum maxi-mum continuous profit. All of the land Is included because nontillable woodlands and pastures, when properly managed, produced income in-come and provide watersheds and drainage controls. Only in recent years have farmers farm-ers generally begun putting into practice measures for keeping their lands at a high level of productivity. producti-vity. In the past, an abundance of fertile land in the United states encouraged some men to mine the fertility from the soil, and after its exhaustion to move on to new lands. Now we are faced with the problem of reclaiming this poorly managed land and bringing it back to profitable production levels. The following practices are important im-portant in good land management programs: 1. Proper land use. 2. Erosion control. 3. Water conservation. 4. Drainage. 5. Maintenance of desirable soil reaction pH). 6. Additions of proper plant nutrients. nu-trients. 7. Crop rotation. 8. Tillage. 9. Organic matter replenishment. Soil productivity can be maintained main-tained by recognizing the importance import-ance of these practices and properly proper-ly adapting them to the particular needs of each farm. ricultural experiment stations. In recent years, the Soil Conservation Service has made farm maps of millions of acres and today has full responsibility at the national level for carrying out the basic classification surveys. Soil maps, showing the types of soil and productivity pro-ductivity ratings along with other features, are helpful to individual farmers in learning more about their particular soils and in planning plan-ning a sound land management program. And then there's the women who scribbled "atomic" in the age blank of her employment application.