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How to reduce nitrogen

The pressure on farmers to reduce nitrogen use and to farm more efficiently is only increasing. Farmers are reviewing how and when they use fertiliser to maximise soil health and nitrogen use efficiency while maintaining yields.

As a UK leader in crop nutrition for 75 years, BFS has developed fertiliser programmes tailored to farmers' changing needs. As well as liquid soil-applied nitrogen fertiliser, BFS's foliar products - PolyNPlus and protein enhancers - are suitable for a wide range of arable crops. Here is an example of how the BFS Fertiliser Programme could be applied to winter wheat. 

Early season top dressing

BFS NitroSulph is a highly efficient 'quick and slow release' liquid nitrogen and sulphur fertiliser which is applied in two to three applications prior to flag leaf. Its sulphur formulation and urease and nitrification inhibitors make it unique.

BFS NitroSulph 'Nhanced includes a carbon source to maintain and improve the microbial health of the soil. It can be used in place of NitroSulph throughout the spring application period.

Late spring foliar nitrogen

Later in the season, the nitrogen use efficiency of liquid and solid soil-applied fertiliser can decline to as low as 25%, especially in a dry season. But, when the leaf canopy is sufficient, a PolyNPlus foliar treatment can dramatically improve the NUE by avoiding complex soil chemistry. So you need less total nitrogen. PolyNPlus has been independently trialled by NIAB and Velcourt. As a guide, and depending on soil and weather factors, 25 litres of PolyNPlus - supplying just 8 kgs of nitrogen between growth stages 37 and 39 - can replace 40-50 kgs of any type of soil-applied nitrogen.

There are several formulations to meet different crop needs:

-PolyNPlus Cereals

-PolyNPlus ManMag

-PolyNPlus High Sulphur


Also available, with required trace elements, for oilseed rape and maize are:

-PolyNPlus Oilseed

-PolyNPlus Maize.

Protein enhancement

Applying additional nitrogen at growth stages 69 to 75 is highly effective when growing milling wheats. BFS's urea-based solutions boost protein and improve the prospect of achieving premium prices.

BFS Profol (18N) is a urea solution and, as a foliar application, has a rapid uptake even in dry weather.

BFS ProfiPlus is a complex, foliar-applied fertiliser formulated from a selection of urea-based products that ensure both rapid uptake and slower release of nitrogen, making it more efficient than other solutions. It also contains sulphur, magnesium and seaweed extract. ProfiPlus is particularly useful when on-farm storage is limited. 

Wheat growth stages

The shading indicates very approximately when the different products should be applied.

Find more information about the BFS Fertiliser Programme please contact us.