By: Abdoulai G. Dibba
An agronomist, Mr Joko Kutubou E. Sanyang has told this paper that there are ways and means of applying fertilizer as well as the time frame for its application.
Mr Sanyang revealed this information to this reporter on Monday September 4th 2017, when this reporter explained his observation with regard to the way farmers are spreading fertilizer just around the crop.
However, this reporter observed during his recent tour of the farming communities from the 26th to the 30th of August, that farmers were spreading fertilizer around their crops and when he asked they lamented the un-affordability of this important input.
Based on this observation, this reporter approached an expert to explain the ways and means of applying fertilizer as well as the time frame for its application.
Mr Sanyang explained that matching fertilizer application rates to crop needs, is an essential component of optimizing crop production.
He pointed out that the groundnut crop does not need the urea fertilizer but requires 100 Kilograms of NPK (Compound) fertilizer per hectare.
Mr. Sanyang stated that with regard to other cereals apart from maize, the required NPK (Compound) fertilizer per hectare is 100 kilograms and that of urea is 50 kilogram per hectare.
For maize, Mr Sanyang said the requirement is 200 kilograms of NPK (Compound) fertilizer per 100 kilograms of urea fertilizer.
“Anything less than that will be an under usage and will not impact positively on the crop” he said.
In terms of the time frame for its application, Agronomist Sanyang said in the case of NPK (Compound) fertilizer, it is most suitable at the time of planting and in the case of Urea, it is between two to three weeks after planting.
Crop production has decreased dramatically over the last few decades, much of which has been due to the infertility of farmlands and inadequate use of fertilizer due to its un-affordability.