When you fill in the required information on the Agro-One Sample information sheets you will be asked to provide a Crop Code.
ALE is the correct pre-plant code for the perennial crop ALFALFA. You would use this code for soil samples taken 6 months to a year before the crop is planted to allow adequate time for any applied limestone and fertilizer to react with the soil before the crop is planted.
ALT is the correct code for established stands of ALFALFA. You would use this code for soil samples taken from an established stand of alfalfa to determine the amount of lime or fertilizer needed for maintenance/topdress applications.
Take care to provide the appropriate codes for the current year, year 2 and year 3 to avoid unlikely crop sequences. An example of an unlikely crop sequence or rotation is shown below:
It is unlikely that a farmer would go to the expense and effort to establish a new stand of alfalfa in year one, plow it down and plant corn in year 2 and replant alfalfa again in year three. A more probable Crop Code sequence would be ALE - ALT - ALT for a new seeding followed by two or more years of established alfalfa or ALT - COS - COS where Year one is the last year of alfalfa followed by 2 years of corn for silage.
Some vegetable crop codes are different for homeowner samples than for commercial vegetable crop codes. For example:
MIX is the correct code for mixed vegetables for the V Commercial Vegetable input sheet.
MVG is the correct code for mixed vegetables for the H Home Lawn & Garden input sheet.
Forms A, V, D1 and D2 will ask for crop codes for the prior 3 years as well as the current and 2 subsequent years. Prior crop history is used to provide comments relative to N requirements of the current and 2 future crops. You will receive nutrient guidelines for the current year and two following years if a valid crop code for all three years and all other required information is provided.
So, please review the crop codes and select those that best match the actual crops to be grown. This will help insure you receive appropriate interpretations and nutrient guidelines.
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