I took baseline soil samples in 2007. After that, green manure was applied (actually, the horses and goats applied the manure by pooping in the fields) In 2009, I took more samples in the middle pasture. Then I applied a combination of Dynamite Prescription Treatment for Soils & Crops and the Dynamite CCF (growth accelerant) Below are the test results:
The soil in pastures is alive with various organisms, including the forage or crop growing on/in it. The biological processes of this system are very similar to human or animal bodies. I found it fascinating that the pH of the soil became more alkaline, just as it would in a healthy body as it became increasingly mineralized. Also, the calcium levels in the soil came up dramatically without the additional of any lime. I also bypassed the testing service recommendation to add phosphorus and nitrogen. The high potassium levels appear to be due to the large applications of manure. In humans, a sodium deficiency causes potassium to leave the cells and become extracellular. A similar dynamic exists in soils. The future addition of sodium should cause the soil organisms to pick up the extra potassium. Conventional soil advice is to add magnesium to offset the potassium levels. However, magnesium can harden the soils. I just applied more Prescription Treatment and added 2 pounds/acre of Dynamite Natural Trace Mineral Salt. In a couple weeks I’ll have another soil test to see if this reduced the potassium levels.
Also, www.seaagri.com has some interesting information about seawater-based fertilizer. I prefer to use the Dynamite brand and add NTM salt, to avoid possible heavy metal pollutants in the ocean. There are lots of great links on this website, and information about how seawater works on soil.
Wachters sells seaweed-based fertilizer that can also be used to bring up sodium and iodine levels in soils.
My goal for the pastures is triple or quadruple yield of mixed grasses/legumes/weeds to feed both the horses and the goats with maximum balanced mineral content. I will be able to feed less hay and supplements, and also minimize sugar risk for the horses.