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Every time no-tillers remove crops from the field, they remove all of the plant nutrients, and if the soil is short on available nutrients, either commercial or organic fertilizer must be applied to maintain productive yields. But if the soil has a high supply of nutrients, soil testing is a must to avoid over-application, which may contribute to environmental problems.

In this podcast episode, Ray Ward, founder and president of Ward Laboratories in Kearney, Neb., will discuss the essential nutrients plants need and the optimal soil test value of each nutrient. He’ll also talk about trace elements that are crucial for plant growth and development, and the importance of returning animal manures to fields at proper rates.

Listen in as Ray talks about nutrient cycling and removal by plants, and the important soil-testing metrics commonly used at his lab to provide test reports that serve as a basis for nutrient management decisions.







No-Till Farmer's podcast series is brought to you by Montag Manufacturing.

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Montag Manufacturing is your fertilizing equipment specialist. Offering dry, liquid and complete fertilizer systems as well as auto-steer carts, Montag’s precision fertilizer-placement solutions will reduce your rate, increase your yield and assist your stewardship goals. Visit them at


Intro Music: Adam Selzer - True North

Interlude Music: Alialujah Choir - Little Picture (Instrumental)