§ 83.292. Determination of nutrients needed for crop production.
(a) The plan must include the acreage and realistic expected crop yields for each crop management unit.
(b) For the development of the initial plan, expected crop yields may not exceed those considered realistic for the soil type and climatic conditions, as set by the operator and the specialist, and approved by the Commission or delegated conservation district. If actual yield records are available during the development of the initial plan, the expected crop yields shall be based on these records.
(c) If after the first 3 years of implementing the plan, the yields do not average at least 80% of the planned expected yield, the plan shall be amended to be consistent with the documented yield levels unless sufficient justification for the use of the higher yields is approved by the Commission or delegated conservation district. The amendment shall be submitted as required under § 83.371 (relating to plan amendments).
(d) When determining expected crop yields for plan amendments, expected crop yields shall be based on documented yield levels achieved for the operation. Expected crop yields higher than historically achieved may be used if sufficient justification is approved by the Commission or delegated conservation district for the use of the higher yields.
(e) When developing the initial plan, soil tests shall be conducted for each crop management unit on the operation, to determine the level of phosphorus (as P), potassium (as K), and soil pH, as follows:
(1) The soil test procedures used must provide accurate test results. The procedures recommended by the Pennsylvania State University and published in Recommended Soil Testing Procedures for the Northeastern United States, Bulletin #493, published by the University of Delaware, may be used to meet this requirement. Other procedures shall be approved by the Commission.
(2) Soil tests conducted within the previous 3 years prior to submitting the initial plan are acceptable.
(3) The plan must include an appendix containing a summary of the results of the soil test analyses for each crop management unit showing the following:
(i) Soil test levels for phosphorus and potassium as reported by the laboratory.
(ii) Soil test levels for phosphorus (as P) in parts-per-million (PPM) and potassium (as K) in PPM, after conversion from the test results from the laboratory, as needed.
(iii) Soil test levels for pH.
(iv) The date of the soil tests and the name of the lab performing the tests.
(4) After the approval of the initial plan, soil tests are required for each crop management unit at least every 3 years from the date of the last test.
(f) Based on the soil tests in subsection (e), the plan must include recommendations for the amount of nitrogen (as total N), phosphorus (as P2O5) and potassium (as K2O) necessary for realistic expected crop yields.
(g) If necessary based on the type of crops planned, the recommendations from the initial soil test shall be adjusted to determine the appropriate amount of nutrients necessary to achieve realistic expected crop yields. This adjustment may be satisfied by using the methodologies in the Soil Test Recommendations Handbook for Agronomic Crops published by the Pennsylvania State University Agricultural Analytical Services Laboratory. Other methodologies for this adjustment shall be approved by the Commission.
The provisions of this § 83.292 amended June 2, 2006, effective October 1, 2006, 36 Pa.B. 2636. Immediately preceding text appears at serial pages (232358) to (232359).
This section cited in 25 Pa. Code § 83.201 (relating to definitions); 25 Pa. Code § 83.204 (relating to applicability of requirements); 25 Pa. Code § 83.272 (relating to content of plans); 25 Pa. Code § 83.281 (relating to identification of agricultural operations and acreage); and 25 Pa. Code § 83.293 (relating to determination of nutrient application rates); 25 Pa. Code § 83.294 (relating to nutrient application procedures); and 25 Pa. Code § 83.342 (relating to recordkeeping relating to application nutrients).
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