Thank You & Merry Christmas
The Dickie Direct team would like to wish you all a Merry Christmas and an enjoyable break for those of you who are managing to take some time off. We would also like to say a huge thanks to all of our clients for your continued support throughout this last year.
2021 Wrap Up
While this year has certainly seen its challenges due to global supply shortages, volatile pricing and ongoing shipping issues there have also been a number of exciting developments that have occurred within Dickie Direct. These include the development and introduction of new and more efficient products, the addition of new team members and on boarding some new systems and infrastructure to improve through store efficiency.
However, the most exciting development has been seeing our Area Managers relationships growing with their clients. As a result of these relationships and a better understanding of each other’s businesses I believe you, our clients, have been able to make more proactive and informed decisions that have proven to be hugely beneficial in the current market. It is clear that these relationships have become the most important aspect of our business.
Our Plan For 2022
As we look ahead into 2022 we can see that the challenges faced this year will still remain for the foreseeable future. However, the advantage is we now have a much better understanding of these challenges and we are confident we have the tools for us to navigate them together.
Below are some options for next year based on where our clients have seen benefits from this year.
Proactive Product Selection
Some product prices have moved more than others for various reasons. Therefore, when looking at applications and desired outcomes it pays to look at all product options. Not only can this provide the opportunity to save on cost per unit of nutrient, but this can also result in a number of agronomic advantages when looking at different nutrient forms.
Polymer Coated Urea – The majority of our maize base blends and many other crop blends that went out this cropping season contained PCU90. Removing the need for a side dressing due to the slow release of nitrogen over a 90 day period providing the plant with nitrogen when it needs it most.
With today’s price of standard Urea combined with a saving on side dressing application costs this has benefited our clients more than ever.
DDPhos Granulated RPR – 2021 has seen a large increase in the number of clients taking advantage of DDPhos Granulated RPR as a controlled releasing phosphate source. Our clients have either used it as their sole source of phosphate or blended it with water soluble forms of phosphate to extend the phosphate response throughout the year. Not only is this a much more efficient form of P on many common New Zealand soils, it also provides a safety measure if phosphate applications are skipped in the coming year due to price increases.
Ammonium Sulphate (SOA) – Providing plant available ammonium nitrogen and sulphate sulphur, SOA is a cost effective and agronomically advantageous alternative to Urea. Applying at 2/3 of the rate of standard urea it has created savings for our clients whilst increasing production when it’s needed.
Phosta K – Many potassium applications have had PhostaK, a slow releasing potassium source present. This can lead to increased potassium utilsation and responses while looking after the soil biology.
Incorporating Biological Enhancers into Blends
Using biological enhancers alongside key nutrients has been proven to both improve the efficiency of applied nutrients as well as enhancing the uptake of nutrients already present in the soil which may have become unavailable to the plant.
At Dickie Direct our rule when using biological enhancers is that we use them in conjunction with key nutrients, not as a substitute. After all there is no point in having a healthy biologically active soils if you are not feeding it the key nutrients that plants require to grow.
The key biological additives that Dickie Direct use have not been impacted by price increases and can be blended in with any solid fertiliser application making them simple and efficient to apply.
More Informed and Targeted Fertiliser Applications
With fertiliser prices continuing to rise it is important to understand your farms fertility levels and targeting applications to areas that need it most. Up to date soil tests allow for lower fertility areas to receive capital inputs, where the budget allows, and higher fertility areas to receive maintenance levels.
Targeted fertiliser applications also lead to regulations being upheld and not overloading the soil nutrient pool when levels are already within the optimum range. Maintaining levels within the optimum range prevents the high costs of capital applications which result when levels drop.
Contact your Dickie Direct Area Manager today if you would like your farm soil tested.
Focus on your pH
Maintaining a balanced pH is critical to ensuring you get the most out of your soil and fertiliser applications. A low pH will lock up both both existing nutrients in the soil and applied nutrients. A balanced pH will unlock these nutrients and also enhance soil biology which are the pathway between nutrients and plant uptake.
The price of lime has not been impacted and applying lime in many instances will give a short-term fertiliser-like response as well as many other long-term benefits. If you have good fertility levels with a pH that has fallen below optimum, then a lime application may be all you require this season.
Benefits of a lime application:
- Improved pasture palatability and production, resulting in increased carcass weights
- Increased plant availability of macronutrients (NPKS, Ca, Mg)
- Low-cost option to increase covers
- Improved soil structure
- Stimulated growth of legumes and clovers
- Maintenance of a healthy soil environment, and fuelling soil biology by promoting microorganism activity
Our store will be open throughout, only closing for stat days. Area Managers will be available for any enquiry you may have over the holiday period. Please find Area Manager contact details below or call 0800 43 42 54 to be directed through to one of the team.
That’s a Wrap
Once again a huge thanks, have fun and we look forward to working alongside you all again next year.
Charles and the Dickie Direct team.