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Dorrigo farmers use FertAg to fight high soil acidity

November 2016

Dorrigo farmers Ian Cork and Mike Tyler believe they have found an answer to the high acidic soil and reduced fertility problems in their region.

Dairy famer Ian Cork runs beef cattle as well, on almost 300 hectares and says he likes the idea of a fertilizer and soil amendment such as FertAg 0-8-0 tackling the high acidity as well as adding nutrient.

“The magnesium and calcium in FertAg 0-8-0 saves me having to use lime as an extra cost,” Ian says. “I bought 4 tons last year and 22 tons this year, with good results for Sorghum. It is cost competitive. “I used single super on pasture but it doesn’t give you all the nutrients like magnesium, calcium and silicon and it is highly soluble so you lose a lot of nutrients, especially after a heavy rain.

“FertAg is a slow release fertilizer and has a good blend of nutrients for soil conditioning and that is good for a place like Dorrigo,” he said. “Obviously the slow release magnesium will help because a magnesium deficiency in the soil will lead to problems like milk fever and grass tetany. “With good rains you will get a magnesium deficiency. You will get a good flush of growth but it won’t drag magnesium out of the ground quick enough.”

Sebago potato farmer Mike Tyler says he has used 24 tons over the past year on his 450-hectare farm and so far so good, especially given the cheaper price.
“The silica and magnesium helps with grass tetany. I have been using it on soil with lower pH and the grass is responding well. Better than single super,” Mike says.
“With heavy rain FertAg stays in the ground and doesn’t wash away. It’s not water soluble like single super, which is gone after a storm.

“It’s about 30 per cent cheaper than a similar product, TNN, so I will keep using it. We are using it for corn and silage, and before we sow pasture for regenerating.”

More information contact journalist Barry Prismall 0438 384520