In addition to testing their hay, producers may want to apply nutrients to their fields in the next few months to help them recover from previous drought years, especially if they've held off in the past due to high fertilizer costs. Nutrient cost is significantly lower than in past months.
In a survey of median prices of various Midwest retailers, Diammonium phosphate prices dropped a total of 55 percent by July compared to the record highs of late fall 2008. Urea recorded a drop of 30 percent, and potash declined 18 percent during the same time frame. Despite the lower average prices, differences in prices among retailers for the same product ranged from around $150 to more than $400 per ton, depending on the fertilizer.
This is partially due to many retailers trying to recoup the costs of stock purchased when prices were high.
"This is a good time to shop around," says Greg Halich, University of Kentucky assistant extension professor in agriculture economics. "You can truck fertilizer a long way to make up even a $100 per ton difference in fertilizer price."
Source: University of Kentucky