Northampton Monitor Farm: Soil Health and Nutrition

Past Event - booking closed

14 May 2019

3:00 PM - 6:30 PM

Newton Lodge Farm, Spring Lane, Clifton Reynes, Olney, Milton Keynes

MK46 5DS

Rick Davies farms 404ha in partnership with his parents, trading as MTH Davies, between Northampton, Bedford and Milton Keynes. He grows Group 1 milling wheat, malting spring barley and HOLL oilseed rape, adding value where ever possible all for premium markets. The soil is a mixture of sandy loam, corn brash, silt and heavy clay loam.

At this meeting we'll be discussing soil health and crop nutrition. We will be joined by Neil Fuller (Biosystems) who will discuss sustainable soil management, nutrient use efficiencey and valuing natural capital. Mark Carter (Bionature) will talk about delivering crop nutrition and optimising crop control.

We will be ending the day with a barbecue. The meeting will involve a farm walk so please come suitably prepared.


  • 15.00 Registration and refreshments (tea/coffee)
  • 15.15 Introduction Judith Stafford, AHDB Knowledge Exchange Manager
  • 15.20 Monitor Farm Review Rick Davies, Northampton Monitor Farmer
    • How are crops looking?
    • Update on field trials
    • Marketing update
    • Plans going forward
  • Soil health at Northampton Monitor Farm Rick Davies
    • Overview of soil conditions
    • Changes made since last soils meeting
    • Reasons behind making soil health a key focus of the monitor farm programme
    • Crop nutrition – current practice
    • Ideas for improving soil health at the farm
  • 15.40 Sustainable soil management, nutrient use efficiency and valuing natural capital Neil Fuller, Biosystems
  • 16.40 Delivering crop nutrition, optimising crop potential Mark Carter, Director at Bionature
  • 17.10 Farm walk Rick Davies, Neil Fuller, Mark Carter, Tom Robinson To include discussion of:
    • Use of rotations to improve soil health
    • Crop choices
    • Cover crops
    • Sources of organic matter – including turf, woodchip and cattle manure – and application rates
    • Effects on crop yields
    • Other benefits (increased workability etc.)
    • Assessing soil health – methods used
    • Cost effectiveness
    • Overall effect on cost – reduced inputs (fertilisers)
    • Environmental benefits
  • 18.20 Summary and Key points
  • 18.30 Meeting close and barbecue


If you have any questions about this event, please contact us using the details below.


T 07891 556623