Paul Hogarth, who runs Overdale Farm near Whitby, is undertaking crop trials to test the new fertilizer polyhalite which is being mined at Boulby in east Cleveland.
Polyhalite, which is marketed as ‘ICL Polysulphate’ has a unique combination of four nutrients vital for plant growth and yield: sulphur, potassium, calcium and magnesium in soluble, readily absorbed forms and can meet these needs in a single application.
Hogarth became involved in the trial after asking to buy standard poly when it was suggested he should take part in the local trial. The trial involved testing several spreaders and techniques to see which combination gave the accurate spread needed.
Back in September Hogarth planted 14 acres of barley, 100 of wheat and 12 of oil seed rape. He said the difference already is remarkable: “The improved growth is astonishing, not just in terms of size but also of lushness which promises very good yields. The oil seed rape fields have done particularly well, with stronger, more vigorous plants and a very noticeable evenness of plant population. It’s almost completely covered.”
The final test will come in late July when the harvest will be due.