2005 Nutrient Management Protocol for Ontario Regulation 267/03 Made under the Nutrient Management Act, 2002

Part 7 - Nutrient Management Plans

Table of Contents

  1. Review and Updating of a Nutrient Management Plan
  2. Required Contents of a Nutrient Management Plan (Regulation Part 3)

7.1 Review and Updating of a Nutrient Management Plan

A nutrient management plan should be reviewed by the farm unit operator annually to ensure that it is still relevant and to recognize and explain any difference between the projections in the nutrient management plan and the records kept of actual events.

All nutrient management plans must be reviewed every five years and should be annually kept up to date to reflect current circumstances on the farm.

7.2 Required Contents of a Nutrient Management Plan (Regulation Part 3)

See Part 5 of the Protocol for descriptions of each of the components listed below as they will have already been completed if a strategy was prepared.

7.2.1 Components of the Nutrient Management Plan

  • Nutrient Information
  • Field Information
  • Cropping practices
  • Nutrient application
  • Nutrient application rates
  • Land base information

7.2.2 Nutrient Information

The nutrient information for all prescribed material intended to be land applied on the farm unit must correspond to the information found in a Nutrient Management Strategy for the farm unit.

7.2.3 Field Information

All land identified in the farm unit must be included in a field section if prescribed materials are to be applied to this land during the nutrient management plan period.

Field Properties

The following field properties must be provided in the nutrient management plan for each field identified in the farm unit:

  1. The total tillable area for each field.
  2. The total tillable area available for nutrient application. Note: this is determined by subtracting the area not available for nutrient application due to required setbacks from the total tillable area for each field.
  3. The percentage of maximum sustained slope near the surface water if the field is within 150 metres of surface water.
  4. A statement as to whether the field is tile drained.
  5. Predominant soil series and soil texture for the field.
  6. A statement regarding the presence or absence of known wells within regulated distances of the field boundaries.
  7. A statement as to whether surface water is adjacent or contained within the field.
Field Sketch:

Many of the field properties are required in the format of a sketch for each field in the farm unit. The sketch must address the following field components:

  • field identifier (from Farm Unit Declaration)
  • sections within the field, if the field has more than one section, including individual field locations and boundaries
  • identify the presence of tile drains
  • the following features must also be included on the sketch (or where the features do not exist, a statement indicating this must be included):
    • the location of all surface water,
    • the location of non-agricultural land uses,
    • the location of any municipal wells within 100 metres of the field boundary
    • if land applying biosolids, the location of all other known wells within 90 metres of the field boundary
    • if land applying only agricultural source material, the location of all other known wells within 30 metres of the field boundary,
    • the maximum sustained slopes within 150 metres of the top of bank of all surface water and
    • show the separation distances for surface water required to meet the regulatory requirements.
Soil Sampling and Analysis

Soil sampling and analysis is to be performed according to Part 9 of the Regulation

7.2.4 Cropping Practices

Crop Rotation and Yields

The following information is required for each field in the nutrient management plan:

  • crop rotation for the duration of the nutrient management plan;
  • expected planting and harvest dates;
  • expected crop yields for the duration of the nutrient management plan; and
  • previous years' crops

7.2.5 Nutrient Application

Commercial Fertilizer Application

All liquid and solid commercial fertilizer applied must be identified for the entire duration of the nutrient management plan. This includes, but is not limited to: starter, pop-up, side-dressed, broadcast, banded, foliar, fertigated, incorporated or unincorporated applications.

For each application, the application date, incorporation method and amount of nutrient application must be identified.

Application of Prescribed Materials and Limits

For each prescribed material listed in section 7.2.2 above, "Prescribed Materials Applied to Land in the Farm Unit" the nutrient management plan must identify the following for the entire duration of the nutrient management plan:

  • prescribed material type and form;
  • expected application date;
  • application method;
  • timing for incorporation; and
  • application frequency;

7.2.6 Nutrient Application Rates

A rate of application for each prescribed material intended to be applied to land must be determined for each part of the land managed in the farm unit (for example: each field, group of fields or field section). Application rates are based on many factors including: the characteristics of the land, and cropping and nutrient information set out in the nutrient management plan. The application rates also are balanced using the agronomic and crop removal balances as described below.

Note: Each of the components in this section apply to agricultural source materials, non-agricultural source materials and commercial fertilizers and must be calculated in accordance with Part IX - Nutrient Quality Standards of the Regulation.

Agronomic and Crop Removal Balance of Nitrogen

To determine the limits for nitrogen application you must calculate the Agronomic Balance and if needed Crop Removal Balance as set out below:

  • Agronomic Balance: Agronomic Balance is the total available nitrogen from all applied nutrients minus crop production requirements (OMAFRA crop fertilizer recommendations).
  • Crop Removal Balance: Total available nitrogen minus the nitrogen removed from the field with the crop when it is harvested.
Agronomic and Crop Removal Balance for Phosphorus

To determine the limits for phosphorus application you must calculate the Agronomic Balance and if needed Crop Removal Balance as set out below:

  • Agronomic Balance: Agronomic Balance is the total available phosphorus from all applied nutrients (which is 40% of the total phosphorus in organic materials in the year it is applied) minus the crop production requirements (OMAFRA crop fertilizer recommendations).
  • Crop Removal Balance: Total available phosphorus (which is assumed to be 80% of the total phosphorus in organic material applied because it includes more than the prescribed materials for the present year and phosphorus becomes available over time for use by future crops) minus the phosphorus removed from the field with the crop when it is harvested.
Common Land Application Setback/Limits Regulation Part 6
  • The Nutrient Management Plan must also include the requirements found in Part VI of the Regulation.

7.2.7 Land Base Information

Demonstration of Adequate Land Base

The nutrient management plan must demonstrate that a sufficient land base exists for the application of all the nutrients identified for land application to the farm unit so that none of the allowable application rates is exceeded and all of the setbacks are met.


For more information:
Toll Free: 1-877-424-1300
E-mail: ag.info.omafra@ontario.ca
Author: OMAFRA Staff
Creation Date: 12 August 2005
Last Reviewed: 12 August 2005