Warmer and wetter conditions this Autumn have led to great growing conditions and have meant most regions have good covers going into the winter. For those who have applied fertiliser these wetter conditions have led to some challenges getting product on the ground, with many having to adjust application plans to ensure nutrient requirements are met.
Temperatures have now dropped and as we settle into the El Nino weather pattern predictions are for a colder winter. El Nino drives a colder south western weather pattern versus the warmer north eastern weather pattern we have experienced over the last three years through La Nina. If this is the case, we can then expect lower growth rates over the winter months. Strategic N may be a good option to pull forward and enhance Spring growth and farm production over this period.
For the Dickie Direct team, we have been taking a long-term view as we consider the number of challenges you as farmers currently have, coupled with the fact that fertiliser prices have been high but on a falling trajectory. Consequently, our team have been proactively telling our clients to limit applications where existing nutrient levels have allowed. For those who have proceeded with maintenance applications, we have been working hard to ensure we are pulling prices back as quickly as possible.
As we look ahead to Spring there are some further positive signals. Global fertiliser prices have reduced considerably as a result of decreased global demand along with shipping rates that have returned to ‘normal’ levels after we had been forced to ship at some levels up by 1000% in the last 12-18 months.
With many clients having reduced their fertiliser spend over the last two years, combined with fertiliser prices that will be considerably lower in Spring we think it is time that we again start talking proactively about maintenance and capital applications, ensuring that farms remain in optimum range for their targeted level of production. We appreciate there is still some uncertainty with commodity prices and that there are other factors impacting budgets outside of our control. Our team of Area Managers look forward to helping you formulate a fertilser plan that fits in with your farm parameters.
Earlier this Autumn we had Bevin Knight join the Dickie Direct team as our Area Manager for the King Country and Northern and Western Waikato regions. We also had Jack Fordyce join the team as our Area Manager for the Bay of Plenty and Southern and Eastern Waikato regions.
Bevin comes from a strong agri-sales background and Jack has been farming in both the Canterbury and Central Plateau regions. Both Bevin and Jack have been busy getting out and meeting clients, if you would like to touch base with either Bevin or Jack, please find contact details below.
Bevin Knight – 027 430 8002
Jack Fordyce – 027 430 8990
Jeremy and Zara are still looking after their regions in the Lower and Eastern North Island, with Jeremy now clocking 5 years at Dickie Direct and Zara approaching 3 years. We appreciate the importance of stable relationships between Area Managers and clients and we are thinking outside of the box and working hard to ensure that you as farmers are able to build informative and long lasting relationships with our team.
The entire Dickie Direct team look forward to getting stuck in this Spring, with the aim to ensure Dickie Direct clients receive the best returns on their nutrient investments.
Large price shifts have seen a range of products regain their competitive edge in the market. Recent wetter seasons are also driving increased demand for a range of products as clients look to ensure they are getting maximum utilisation and return from their nutrient investments. Outlined below are a few products that we think are worth considering this Spring:
Triple Superphosphate: For those who are looking for a fast acting phosphate source without the need for Nitrogen then Triple Superphosphate is a great option. Not only is it cost effective source of phosphate ex store but with it containing 20.5% P which is considerably higher analysis than common alternatives it also comes with large savings in freight and application costs. Triple Superphosphate can be blended with Elemental S in order to cater for annual phosphate and sulphur requirements.
DAP: A cost effective way to apply nitrogen and phosphate. Higher analysis compared to common alternatives resulting in less freight and application costs. Contains nitrogen in stable Ammonium form resulting in less volatilisation than nitrogen applied in Urea forms.
Ammonium Sulphate: A cost effective way to apply nitrogen and sulphate. After wetter periods with increased growth available sulphate often becomes a limiting factor and can restrict nitrogen response. Ensure you are maximising your N response with Ammonium Sulphate.
Granulated RPR: Granulated RPR can be used as a primary source of phosphate or in conjunction with water soluble phosphate forms to enhance short, medium and long term phosphate responses. RPR is a cost-effective form of P and when used in the right situations can significantly enhance phosphate utilisation, driving a longer term response and reducing the requirement for liming.
PCU 90 (Polymer Coated Urea): Many of our clients are now incorporating Polymer Coated Urea into their pastoral and cropping blends. With a 90 day release period the benefits of using PCU90 are:
- Extended N response, remove the requirement for side dressing and additional N applications.
- Improved N response, releasing nitrogen tot he plant with moisture, ensuring there is always N available to the plant.
- Reduce N losses – N is only being released with adequate moisture significantly reducing volatilisation losses. In high rainfall events losses are restricted as the polymer casing will limit the N release and losses via leaching.
- Reduce N costs – More efficient N combined with removed application costs can result in not only better production but also reduced costs.
Liquid Ammo27: Last winter we developed and introduced Liquid Ammo 27 and received great feedback from clients using the product. Containing a high ratio of nitrogen and sulphate along with biological enhancers clients were able to obtain cost effective N responses in cooler soil temps. Mix with Thistle Spray and/or Gibb as required.
Our team look forward to working closely with you and forming optimum plans for the Spring. We have the products, knowledge and ideas to help you maximise production and returns.
Charles Dickie and the Dickie Direct team