There are a lot of questions concerning correct rates and time of fertilizer application on irrigated mountain meadows. Unfertilized fields in Rio Blanco County will yield about 1.3 to 2 tons of hay per acre while fertilized fields will produce 3 to 5 tons per acre. Improved grass species like Timothy, Orchard, and Brome have the ability to produce over 2 tons only with additional fertilizer. Locally the two most important fertilizers are nitrogen and phosphorus. Insufficient amounts of either nutrient will limit your production.
Fertilizer applications attempt to bring nutrients into balance. Information based on past production and soil test results can aid in developing a fertilization program. This article is an attempt to help you in developing production goals.
Soil testing information and equipment are available from the Cooperative Extension Office. If you have questions, please call 970-878-4093 in Meeker or 970-675-2417 in Rangely.