John Lory and Steve Cromley
Division of Plant Sciences

A nutrient management plan is a road map for your farm on how to manage manure and fertilizer in an efficient and environmentally sound way. The first step in nutrient management planning is to collect the information about your farm needed for the planning process. This guide will help you determine what information and records your nutrient management planner is likely to need to complete a plan for your farm.

This guide is a survey that helps prepare you to work with a nutrient management planner. Do not worry if you do not have all the requested information or cannot answer all the questions in the survey. Your nutrient management planner will work with you to fill in the gaps in the information you provide.

The more of this information you can provide, the more accurately the resulting plan will reflect what is possible and best for your farm. Having more of this information on hand at the start of the planning process also will speed the planning process for your farm.

Helpful information

  • Driving directions to your operation from the nearest town or known landmark.
  • Plat map showing farm boundaries.
  • Aerial or other farm maps showing facilities, field boundaries, waterways, lakes, ponds, wells, dwellings and other important farm features.
  • Field-by-field crop management records that include information on past crop yields, and fertilizer and manure application rates.
  • Soil test records including the date of the most recent test for each field.
  • Manure analyses records.
  • A map showing what fields you prefer to use for manure applications and fields that should not be used for manure application.
Farm Information Survey: Contact information
Operation nameOperator name
Operation address

Operator address

Farm Information Survey: Manure production, storage and handling
Name of operation
Building management and manure production
Bird typeAverage animal weight ((weight in + weight out)/2)
Number of housesNumber flocks per year
Average number of animals on the farm at any one time
Do you use a phosphorus reduction strategy such as feeding phytase?
Bedding type (sawdust, rich hulls, other)Tons per year used
Do you apply additives to your litter such as alum? Please explain
Amount of litter removed per cleanout
Please describe how you manage litter in your buildings (frequency and timing of decaking and partial and full cleanouts)
Cake manureTons per building per cleanoutTimes per year
Partial cleanoutTons per building per cleanoutTimes per year
Full cleanoutTons per building per cleanoutTimes per year
Do you have a stackhouse?Capacity
Do you have litter test?Date of last litter test
Mortality management
Average percent of annual mortality
Do you use litter for composting?If yes how many tons per year?
Number of composting binsBin size
How many tons per year of mortality compost do you generate?
If you have other manure storage and treatment facilities, explain here

Manure and litter application
Type of equipment used to apply manure and litter
Spreader capacity
Swath (application) width
Minimum application rate


Farm Information Survey: Crop rotation

Fill in the following table to provide information for each field in your operation or that is available for manure application. Field names should be used consistently throughout the plan. When providing crop rotation and yield goal information, start with the crop that will be grown in that field during the first year of the plan. Use crop records to help determine realistic yield goals.

Field nameAcresCrop rotation (yield goal)Date of last soil testAvailable for manure applicationOwned, rented or otherIrrigatedTilled or no-till

Corn (140)
Soybean (40)
Corn silage (20 t/a)
Wheat silage (3 t/a)

October 2003YesOwnedNoTilled








Farm Information Survey: Fertilization and tillage practices

Fill in the following table to provide information on your fertilizer, manure and tillage practices. List each crop in your rotation.

  • For fertilizer and manure applications, provide the source and analysis, if available, and the time you prefer to apply.
  • For "placement," use the abbreviations given in the footnote following the table. If you incorporate surface applications, include the average number of days after application it takes you to incorporate.
  • Under the tillage heading, provide the type of operation and the timing you prefer, for each tillage pass performed to prepare the field for that crop.
Example: CornAnhydrous 82-0-0Spring-AprilINJLayerSpring-AprilSI (1)DiskFall
 Starter 32-0-0PlantingINJ   Field cultivatorSpring
1SNI = Surface application not incorporated, SI = Surface application incorporated; provide the number of days to incorporate, INJ = Injected
Publication No. G9216