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Browse by Author: Steph Kulesza
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Swine Manure as a Fertilizer Source

By: Steph Kulesza, Mahmoud Sharara SoilFacts

This factsheet explains the three factors of proper swine manure management: the nutrient content of the manure, the percentages of those nutrients that are available to the plant and the nutrient requirements of the plant.

Soils and Water Quality

By: Luke Gatiboni, Steph Kulesza, Deanna Osmond SoilFacts

North Carolina has an abundant supply of clean water, a resource vital to our high quality of life. Rivers, lakes, groundwater aquifers, and coastal estuaries are crucial to public health, economic development, and recreational opportunities. However, our water sources are constantly threatened with degradation by such activities as imprudent development, improperly managed agricultural and industrial activities, and unsound waste disposal practices. The soil exerts an important influence on water quality. How we manage the soil and what we put on it determine, in part, the level of treatment required to make our water supplies safe and enjoyable. This fact sheet explains how soils influence water quality and why efficient soil management helps protect water quality.

Poultry Litter as a Fertilizer Source

By: Steph Kulesza, Mahmoud Sharara SoilFacts

This factsheet describes the nutrient composition of poultry manure and land application techniques based on matching the nutritional requirements of the crop with the nutrients available in manure. This publication also includes a worksheet to determine the nutrient needs of your crop.

Guidelines for the Commercial Application of Poultry Litter

By: Steph Kulesza SoilFacts

A summary of North Carolina rules and regulations governing the purchasing, handling, application and reporting of poultry litter by commercial haulers. This publication also includes a sample agreement between growers and haulers regarding who has responsibility for the various stages of litter handling.

Applying Animal Waste to Cover Crops

By: Steph Kulesza, Christine Lawson

This publication provides guidance on applying nutrients from animal wastes on cover crops. It provides guidance on cover crop management, nitrogen credits, and application windows.

Deep Soil Sampling for Nutrient Management

By: Steph Kulesza, Deanna Osmond, David Hardy SoilFacts

Soil samples that determine lime and fertilizer needs of crops routinely come from the top 4 to 8 inches of soil. However, deep soil samples will be needed for the Phosphorus Loss Assessment Tool (PLAT), and this publication describes how to take these 28- to 32-inch deep samples.

North Carolina Realistic Yield Expectations and Nitrogen Fertilizer Decision Making

By: Deanna Osmond, Luke Gatiboni, Steph Kulesza, Rob Austin, David Crouse

This publication discusses the Realistic Yield Expectations database as a resource for nitrogen fertilization rate decisionmaking. Topics include recent research and the resulting updates to the database for improved nitrogen fertilizer rates based on new yield data.

Use of On-Farm Records for Modifying a Certified Animal Waste Management Plan

By: Steph Kulesza, John Havlin SoilFacts

Changes in the interpretation of North Carolina water quality rules and technical standards allow for the use of on-farm records in the development of waste management plans. This publication describes the use of such records, citing examples. The use of on-farm records can work to an animal producer’s benefit by providing more site-specific information about how an animal waste management system should be operated, particularly with respect to the number of acres of crops necessary to properly utilize the nutrients (mainly nitrogen) in the wastewater.

Starter Phosphorus Fertilizer and Additives in North Carolina Soils: Use, Placement, and Plant Response

By: Luke Gatiboni, Deanna Osmond, David Hardy, Steph Kulesza SoilFacts

Phosphorus (P) is the second most important nutrient in crop production but is often found in relatively low amounts in native soils. Decades of fertilizer application have led to P enrichment of most North Carolina agricultural soils. Excess soil P that leaves agricultural fields via runoff and drainage can cause algal blooms in water resources that lead to impaired drinking water quality and can limit recreational activities. Maintaining adequate soil P levels for crop growth can reduce P runoff, save money, and protect the environment