Yes, it’s spring and you may have caught a whiff of what some rural residents of New York refer to as “dairy-air”. Dairy cows produce high quality milk, but what people often over look is the other valuable commodity they produce – manure! The average dairy cow produces over 100 pounds of manure a day. Multiply that times the number of cows on my farm, times 365 days a year and you get…well, a lot of manure!
Manure is an excellent source of nitrogen and phosphorus, two nutrients necessary for healthy soil, as well as organic matter that helps improve soil drainage and fertility. For these reasons, we like to use manure on our fields in an effort to replace nutrients lost from growing crops, and to avoid purchasing costly commercial fertilizer. To do so though, we are required to follow strict plans that dictate and document how much manure can be applied on a field, as well as where and when it is applied.
So while I know it may smell a little, you can be reassured that manure from our cows is actually helping the environment by fertilizing our fields, that it is being applied in a responsible manner and that the odor is short-lived.