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Manure timing

What you need to know

Keep the following in mind when thinking about manure application timing.

  • Do not apply in winter in Minnesota.
  • Apply in fall only after soil temperatures are below 50°F, and not on coarse-textured soil.
  • Spring or summer are the best times to apply manure in Minnesota.

When is the best time to apply manure?

That depends on the logistics of each farm, weather, and soil conditions. It is also influenced by what risks you are willing to take. Those risks include:

  • losing nutrients if the manure is applied too early
  • running out of storage for the manure  
  • reducing time for nutrients to release if the manure is applied too late
  • having a wet and/or cold spring which could delay manure application and then planting.
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Melissa Wilson, Extension manure management specialist

Reviewed in 2018

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