Growing thicker horse pastures and management of higher yielding cattle pastures means the microbial activity in the soil is your key. Or throwing money at chemical fertilizers that break the soil biology. AGGRAND natural pasture fertilizer choices formulated to encourage microbial growth within the soil while providing nutrients that are immediately ready for the pasture grasses. With AGGRAND organically designed liquid fertilizers, you have the microbes and nutrients in one so the root systems are stronger and high quality forage that is evenly grown is the result.
When using pasture fertilizers by AGGRAND, biology follows chemistry
Microbes are key because they break down nutrients into forms grasses and plants can use and improve the soil structure by creating passageways for the movement of water and air. Pastures are not thought to have these issues. But when you see barren areas, weeds, mud, higher grasses that are not being eaten in favor of younger stands, then there are needs for overseeding, reseeding and fertilizing.
Pasture fertilizer for thicker grasses is bottom line
Pasture is a crop like any other. Feeding the pasture grasses is key. Our fertilizers are a complementary system. Using a soil analysis every three years will tell you what you need for the fertilization schedule. Email us a copy of your latest soil test or use the Midwest Labs analysis which will be sent to you, our Certified Crop Advisor and to us. Write to us for our questionnaire on your pasture management. This will let us know your challenges with the pasture, the fertilizers you have been using, your management system. Details let us know what your pasture will need this year.
We have the AGGRAND 4-3-3 with kelp concentrate and fish emulsion, plus a multitude of micronutrients and elements that encourage soil biology to flourish. The fish emulsion offers nitrogen naturally, this being a nontoxic source of pasture nitrogen. The nitrogen for grasses must be adequate so the phosphorous and potassium among other nutrients can be used by the grass. When you see high spots in a grazed pasture, that’s the nitrogen at work allowing the other nutrients to be used. The low spots around the flourishing pasture grass is where the nutrients are locked into the soil. Yes, lime makes everything greener but the nitrogen and plant food sources are more than calcium.
Your pastures may also be low in phosphorous, often because of the cuttings from pastures which haul away this nutrient among others. A reason for pasture fertilizer is also when the grasses and hay is cut for later. We have the AGGRAND Liquid Bonemeal 0-12-0 for immediate release and longterm phosphorous.
The potassium might be just fine even with low phosphorous, but if needed there is the AGGRAND Liquid Kelp 0-0-8 to be added.
AGGRAND pasture fertilizer can be blended into a custom set of numbers for exactly as your pasture requires. The 4-3-3 with 0-12-0 gives 4-17-3 with some extra calcium too. If you need the lime soil amendment for a lot of extra calcium instead, that is chosen over the bonemeal. IF you are not sure what you need or how much, email or call. We have the knowledge on AGGRAND liquid fertilizers and a calculator too.
Liquid fertilizer for pastures
Calls and emails come in often where the farm is done with the granular and dry fertilizers. “Looking for something easier than dry fertilizer.” “Want a fertilizer that I can let the animals back on pasture sooner.” “Want a fertilizer that will be more available to the pastures, even without rain or irrigation.”
Easy….. AGGRAND liquid fertilizer for pastures are in the complementary system that can be mixed for a once-over easy application. You can use a boom, pull-behind, backpack, irrigation system.
Immediately available….. Once applied, they will be available to the plants immediately.
Longterm fertilizer…… They will also be used by plants longterm and some of these liquid fertilizers are also a slow-release for use during the growing season and beyond, but not in a way that leaves a toxic nitrogen release, so no worries.
AGGRAND was designed from the beginning to be used especially as a liquid fertilizer. The pastures are always a foliar application anyway, so what better than for hay and pasture to be one of the main uses for AGGRAND from the start. But now it is used by the leading wildlife food plot developer, the leading strawberry plant grower in the world, orchards, vineyards, fields and, as always, hay and pasture.
Here are links on foliar applications using AGGRAND liquid fertilizers, including nozzles, irrigation tests.
- When using pasture fertilizers by AGGRAND, biology follows chemistry
- Pasture fertilizer for thicker grasses is bottom line
- Liquid fertilizer for pastures
- Organic fertilizer for pastures
- Organic pasture management
- What you need to watch for in pasture fertilizer so you do not deal with toxic elements.
- ISSUES FOR PASTURE MANAGEMENT THAT FERTILIZER ANSWERS
- Nitrogen that washes up the soil biology with a chemical blast of N
- Reseeding to replenish and avoid barren areas where weeds grow with wild abandon
- Weeds that germinate and get the foothold in your pasture again and again
- Manure as pasture fertilizer
- Spreading the manure for pasture fertilization
- High quality pastures
- Pasture grass and fertilizer recommendations
- Pasture fertilizer application rates
- Legume pasture forages and what to use for fertilizer
- Pasture fertilizer calculator and prices
Organic fertilizer for pastures
If there is a question of choosing a chemical fertilizer over the organic fertilizer for pastures, then this Carbon Dioxide Concentration test illustrates the difference to plants. Remember they are breathers just like people. AGGRAND natural fertilizer 4-3-3 with nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium, among other nutrients created an extremely increased source of carbon dioxide for the plants. The leading chemical fertilizer took a little jump and dropped off even moreso than the distilled water. This respiration gauge is only one way to prove that AGGRAND improves plant health through soil fertility. See the Soil Fertility Projects by AGGRAND where they are always testing and improving the fertilizer formulation.
The organic fertilizer is also safe for moving animals back on pasture when it is dry. No need to wait for the rain or irrigation to dissolve nitrogen, since the AGGRAND organic formulations use all natural nitrogen that are no more than a nutritious mist over the grasses.
Organic pasture management
AGGRAND fertilizers are formulated to allow for organic pasture management. Using the table of contents, you can follow what interests you as we cover several issues and answers for using all natural pasture fertilizers instead of opting for chemical fertilizers or nothing at all. We also broach the subject of manure management to be used with a fertilizer program, ass needed.
What you need to watch for in pasture fertilizer so you do not deal with toxic elements.
- Lawn fertilizers and lawn and pasture fertilizers that are not organic must never be used on pastures. There are herbicides, pesticides often added to the mix. The lawn fertilizer is quite often a slow-release formula of nitrogen. The chemical based nitrogen is toxic and must be washed away from the land before grazing commences. AGGRAND fertilizers are natural nitrogen from fish emulsion and though these provide a quick and slow release nutrient base, there is no toxicity, only a welcome fishy, seaweed seasoning to the herds food source.
- When the pasture fertilizer is not natural they are going to direct, “Do not apply near water, ponds, streams, storm drains, or drainage ditches. Remove any excess from sidewalks and driveways.” That is not organic and that is not AGGRAND. AGGRAND is useful even in runoff. Ponds eat it up, a natural element for the water organisms.
ISSUES FOR PASTURE MANAGEMENT THAT FERTILIZER ANSWERS
Nitrogen that washes up the soil biology with a chemical blast of N
The grass has to be able to absorb all the nitrogen added to the pasture or it will leach into nearby lakes, ponds, streams and aquifer. The chemical nitrogen is toxic to horses and cattle, sheep, goats, chickens, wildlife. The pasture is not usable until at least a half-inch of rain or irrigation has dissolved all the nitrogen into the plant uses. And what if the runoff is in a lower portion of pasture that holds the nitrogen even longer? While that happens, the soil biology is washed up because the worms are not able to survive the chemical nitrogen blast. Pastures without worms are pastures without progressive health and yields. Unless more nitrogen is added. And adding more pounds of nitrogen per acre than the pasture can absorb…….. and on and on. That is why the AGGRAND 4-3-3, 0-12-0, 0-0-8 and Liquid Lime is an ideal choice for those seeking the natural avenue to feed their horses and livestock for a lesser cost and higher yield.
More fertilizer companies are marketing their products as lawn and pasture fertilizers. They do not always reveal if the nitrogen is a slow release or not. For safety-sake, avoid unnatural slow-release fertilizers meant for turf or lawns because these will continually deliver nitrogen to the pasture grasses and make it unsafe for grazing horses and cattle, goats, sheep, llama, chickens, insects, worms. The wildlife that visit your pasture for forages don’t have a safety paddock to protect them either.
Reseeding to replenish and avoid barren areas where weeds grow with wild abandon
Dwindling pastures have elements that cost the farm or homestead even more grassland. The bare areas are perfect ground for weeds to proliferate. They will seed themselves just fine, given the chance. The bare spots also create mud holes that grow to compacted craters. The bare spots in pastures are usually where the animals who have the dentures and knack for it have pulled out the grasses when eating, made the grass a chosen spot for overgrazing, or decided to make that spot a stomping ground. The answer is rough and tough roots. When pulled or stomped, the grass may take the trauma but the roots have their back, or roots, so to speak, and all is not lost. Dwindling pastures need to be overseeded in the fall or spring. That does not mean a renovation which is reseeding. Just seeding where the grasses are and paying special attention to the bare spots. When seeding, AGGRAND Liquid Lime for the newly prepared soil is a good amendment of calcium which will naturally and greatly contribute to the development of shoots and roots. If you need phosphorous, then choose the Liquid Bonemeal 0-12-0 which supplies phosphorous and calcium.
The overseeded area is the same as newly seeded. The horses and cattle, all the animals actually, will devastate the young grasses one way or another. So keep them off newly planted pastures until the grass is established. This can be six months to a full year, depending on your run and how tender the grass. Consider a more tolerant grass when overseeding…. a complementary grass species to what you have now and that will manage well in the climate and growing conditions. We discuss Pasture Grasses further on.
When not to reseed….. So much easier to fertilize and keep the pasture thick and lush so weeds and bare spots are not in control.
Weeds that germinate and get the foothold in your pasture again and again
There are always concerns of fertilizing the weeds when you do the pasture grasses and forages. But the root system of pasture grasses and their prolific growth throughout the pasture will given them the stronghold, even over fertilized weeds.
These are the organic means for dealing with weeds. Herbicides are not even in the numbered list. If you want an unnatural herbicide, we do not recommend anything, mainly because it ends up being an unending route that does not benefit nature or the health of the animals grazing on the pastures. The weeds just develop more resistance, as nature seems to do in a force of survival. Even weeds have their purpose, just not in your pasture, right? And if herbicide is a must-do, then do so in the evening when there is little wind, selectively choosing the areas, even though the herbicide is non-selective of weeds and your grass. But then you will need to reseed instead of overseed, more difficult, more expensive, longer rebound for the pasture before grazing commences.
Besides, the act of ‘herbiciding’ is not a venture that really gets the pasture ahead because the new weeds will fill in where old weeds and grasses die off when herbicides are used. The weed issue needs to be corrected, and overseeding and fertilizing the pastures is one huge answer.
- As already established, managing a thick and healthy pasture will compete with weeds which are seedlings when they first appear. Crowd them out with pasture grasses that have heavy-duty roots. Fertilize for strong root zones and prolific pasture grass growth.
- Fighting weeds when they are up in the spring is a valiant challenge.
- Selectively spraying with vinegar, copper-tea or other natural weed deterrents is progressive and can win a war if implemented in a timely schedule early on.
- Many taller weeds can be controlled by regular mowing of pastures. This mowing needs done before the seeds are formed to keep them from spreading better than they would have on the wind.
- That said, some of the wildest weed problems in even well-maintained pastures are those weeds growing close to the ground. The spreading weeds are huge challenges especially when they spread by their rhizome roots and are so low they escape mowers.
- Suggesting adding goats to the pasture, though in a managed way. Perhaps borrowing some? With cattle, the goats tend to present several challenges.
- On the better hand, sheep go after weeds with a vengeance when they are tender young things, the weeds that is. Grazing sheep and cattle is a novel and profitable solution to better pasture management and quality, higher profits and you can read more on our Natural Crazing and Permaculture Pastures pages.
- A burnoff can control weeds in certain areas then reseed. Burn with a torch or pull them up and make a bonfire.
- Insects love weeds more than grass, so let them live.
- This is way out there, but you know someone who is into natural supplements and making their own extracts. Let them browse the pasture for what is useful to dig and take back to their place.
- Corn gluten meal in the weed patches so they cannot so easily propagate. The meal stops them from reseeding. Really.
We discuss the nuisance weeds and toxic plants on the Natural grazing and Permaculture pages.
Overgrazing Pastures – How fertilizer and rotational grazing steps in
When there is not sufficient pasture for the herds, the choice becomes improved pasture management or lower stocking density. Pasture fertilizer is a step toward better management, higher yields of dry-matter forage and pasture grazing. The fertilizer will create tolerance to high grazing stress, eliminate soil erosion when the pasture is thick and well-established.
Great stress is placed on the pasture and herd with continuous grazing. But the fertilizer applications scheduled with rotational grazing will alleviate stress and regrow the grasses much quicker so the herd does not need decreased.
Horse will seriously damage favorite grasses and are the most prominent in creating their own system. A system where the quality grasses die off and weeds get their hold. With horses being spot grazers after specific forage species and that don’t leave their preferred pasture areas unless guided, the plant carbohydrate reserves in that area are unable to recoup. The pasture grasses cannot regrow. That is why a rotational pasture system helps. The AGGRAND liquid fertilizers will give grasses a quick growth spurt so animals are back on their pasture sooner, sometimes two and three times sooner.
Yes, rotational grazing does require the labor and time, additional fencing and water sources. Once set up, once the applications of AGGRAND 4-3-3 and liquid kelp are scheduled, the system increases productivity and the initial cost is offset. The legumes and grasses grow better and the feed available per acre increases.
Mowing then fertilizing
After animals are moved from a pasture, clipping or mowing the pastures to two- to three-inches will help control the weeds and will prevent pasture grasses from heading. After the height is two or three inches, then apply AGGRAND liquid fertilizer, usually the 4-3-3 at a rate of one gallon per acre.
Manure as pasture fertilizer
This stuff piles up… everywhere. At eighty pounds of daily manure per cow and fifty pounds of manure per horse. One of the finest art forms for manure is to compost it. This is managed decomposition of manure so you have a nutrient-rich fertilizer for crops, including pastures. Composted animal manure will decrease the need for commercial fertilizers. It could completely eliminate that need, but some farms just won’t have enough for their system. So that is where we come in with the AGGRAND fertilizers. If you set up the right conditions so the oxygen is not shut out of the manure pile, you can have microbes to do most of the work. The AGGRAND can be used for a compost accelerator, creating microbes and compost pile conditions that will create the finest compost in the end.
Read more on manure composting for fertilizer here…..
Spreading the manure for pasture fertilization
There are a few tips for spreading the manure piles already in the pasture or the manure of compost piles thrown on the pasture.
- The ground needs to thaw first. Then drag the pasture with a chain link harrow or other implement at least one time each year, of after each rotation. If the ground is not thawed then the dormant grasses will be damaged, they will be mulched by the compost instead of fertilized, and the compost and manure will wash away.
- Do not apply in a rainy weeks, so it will not wash away. Also, protect the water sources by not applying the manure and compost in areas where the runoff can affect streams, ponds, wellheads and other water resources. The AGGRAND, on the other hand, can be applied and will not contaminate water sources. So for those areas, consider the 4-3-3, liquid lime, liquid kelp, liquid bonemeal complementary products.
- Fresh manure may contain parasite eggs, so do not apply fresh manure or spread existing manure on the pasture where animals are still grazing, provide a break before returning animal to pastures where manure was spread. To counteract the time lost here, the AGGRAND liquid fertilizers can be applied and the pastures used the same day.
- Once pasture manures are dragged, the parasites and worms will die from exposure to sunlight and air.
- Use soil analysis so you will apply only what you need. This means you will probably spread more thinly, holding onto resources instead of wasting them.
- Last but not least, if you are using the stall waste with wood shavings, straw and the like, then the microbes in the soil will pull nitrogen out of the soil to break them down. Right out of the pasture. So use a nitrogen fertilizer wither in the composting system and / or on the land so these materials will break down without nitrogen loss.
High quality pastures
Pasture grasses need to be productive with high quality, highly palatable, aggressive grasses the entire season. The best way to meet the feed requirements for the best cost is through the well-managed and productive pasture.
On the far side of less than ideal, Kentucky bluegrass is an answer. It must be well-established and properly fertilized, though not in that order. But this is the one pasture grass that will withstand the overgrazing of a pasture system the best when there is not enough for the number of animals. A paddock system with Kentucky bluegrass for rotational grazing will supply some exercise and quality grasses.
Pasture grass and fertilizer recommendations
Here is the long list of pasture grasses that AGGRAND is used for including grasses, forbs and legumes.
- Browntop Millet
- Crested Wheatgrass, Slender Wheatgrass, Intermediate Wheatgrass
- Dahurian Wildrye, Perennial Ryegrass, Italian Ryegrass
- Tiffany teff
- Lespedeza Pasture Grass
- Birdsfoot Trefoil
- Annual Sunflower, Chicory
- Peanuts, swede, turnips
- Meadow Brome, Matua brome, prairie grass
- Timothy, Climax Timothy
- Pensacola Bahiagrass, Argentine Bahiagrass
- White Clover, White Dutch Clover, Red Clover
- Alfalfa, lucerne
- Weeping Lovegrass
- Mulato II Pasture Grasses
- Buffalo Grass
- Tall Fescue
- Bermudagrass, Morhay Bermudagrass
- Kentucky Bluegrass
To give an idea of the application rate for different species, here are some examples of AGGRAND Liquid Fertilizer 4-3-3 for different pasture grasses.
Pasture fertilizer application rates
With the right species for your area, potent organically natural fertilizers creating moderate to good soil conditions, the more nutrient and lush the pasture, the more grazing can be done by more cattle, horses, goats, sheep or whatever your farm or homestead offers.
Legume pasture forages and what to use for fertilizer
The legumes require calcium, phosphorous and potassium or they can be annihilated by grazing animals, they just won’t have what it takes to hang on. Competition from grasses, weeds, diseases, overgrazing, insect damage and drought can make a thriving legume forage disappear. AGGRAND will help the plants take hold and compete with the best. Liquid bonemeal for phosphorous. Liquid lime for calcium and liquid kelp for sulfur and potassium.
There are much higher requirements for phosphorous (F) and potassium (P) than the grass pastures alone. The yields of legumes increase, along with the lasting years for the forage stand. AGGRAND liquid concentrates are easy to apply all natural, organic even, affordable and delivered to your barn.
AGGRAND liquid lime can reduce acidity in legume pasture areas so the minimum soil pH of 6.5 is maintained. While not a long-lasting solution in acid soils, the liquid lime adds calcium and can raise the pH. While the pH of 6.0 is good for grass pastures, a higher pH for legume grasses can boost yields. The AGGRAND liquid lime can be applied easily and with the other fertilizers you need at that time.
Pasture fertilizer calculator and prices
There is always the question of price for organic pasture fertilizer formulations. We can use the fertilizer calculator on your size of pasture and what the applications are for the species of pasture grasses. In an instant, the answer. Just email us the information.