What is nutrient management?
Nutrient management is an essential step in maintaining soil health and optimizing crop yield and quality. Nutrient management involves applying the right type of nutrient sources, such as manure, fertilizer or compost in the right amount, in the right place and at the right time.
Soil sampling and testing is often a first step in nutrient management and a proactive approach to monitor and maintain soil health, informing farmers how much manure (or alternative nutrient) to apply, and where. A major reason for soil testing is to evaluate soil fertility, the ability of the soil to supply crops with nutrients.
Understanding soil test results can guide decisions and help to:
- Know what nutrients your crops will require
- Avoid over-application of nutrients and unnecessary costs
- Prevent water contamination and greenhouse gas emissions
- Maintain optimum pH, micronutrients in your soil
For more information on soil sampling, including:
- How to take a soil sample
- The best time of year to take a soil sample, and
- A list of labs where to take a soil sample
visit our Soil Nutrient Testing page.
Nutrient management tools and programs
Simplify your nutrient management process with our calculator. Interpret soil results, assess crop nutrient requirements, and set application rates.
Check weather and field conditions before you spread using our Application Risk Management (ARM) tool.
Convert laboratory phosphorous results from the original testing method to Kelowna method used in B.C.
Learn how to prepare nutrient management plans through a Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Fisheries training program.
Determine the nutrient contributions of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium from manures and the other organic nutrient sources.
Convert laboratory soil nitrate test results from parts per million to amounts in kilograms per hectare
Other nutrient management pages
- Nutrient management plans
- Deciding what to apply
- Technical reports and soil nutrient studies
- Phosphorus Management
- Soil pH Management
Nutrient Management FAQs
Some FAQs about Nutrient Management are listed below with links to further information. If you have any questions about nutrient management, contact us at AgriServiceBC@gov.bc.ca
- What times of year can I spread manure, and what do I need to do to comply with the new regulation?
- How do I know how much manure I should be spreading on my crop?
- What is a nutrient management plan?
- What is required of me, regarding nutrient management, under the new regulation (Code of Practice for Agricultural Environmental Management)?
Plan for success with an Environmental Farm Plan (EFP)? If you are a farmer or rancher in British Columbia, an EFP planning advisor will walk through environmental risks and opportunities on your operation, including nutrient management. This program is, voluntary, confidential, and free. Visit the EFP program website for more information.