21. jun. 2016

Sustainability : The planning of the fertilizers

We regularly analyze the soils in our different plots.

These cover three hectares close to the villages of Soulieres and Loisy-en-Brie in the department of la Marne.

We classify them in seven different units and analyze one per year.

The objective of the analysis may be to measure for instance the general state of the plot but it may also cover a more specific issue somewhere in a plot.

The plots:

The sampling of the plot
We collect the samples of soils with the manual drill in a depth of up to 30 centimeters.

A minimum of 10 samples per hectare are demanded. We usually do more, but the amount will depend on the objective of the analysis.

The samples are mixed thoroughly in a basket as only a minor quantity will be sent off to the lab.

The soil analysis
At the lab, the physical and the chemical composition of the soil is analyzed.

Based on this, the lab makes a diagnosis of the status of the plot regarding elements, organic material and important ratios like the carbon/nitrogen to confirm that the levels of nitrogen and of organic matter brought to the plot stay within a correct range in order to optimize liberalization of nutriments.

The fertilization strategy
The lab will suggest a strategy for the fertilization based on its diagnosis.

However, we also use our experiences in the plots as input for decisions. For instance, a lab analysis may point at a lack of manganese or potassium in a plot. If the colours of the leaves don't show signs of this in the plot analyzed, we will keep an eye on it but not change our fertilization strategy.

We use organic fertilizers exclusively (guano (Wikipedia)). The choice will be the product that fits the suggestions of the lab combined with our own observations.

Return Sustainability main page or
How to nourish the soils