Illinois Fertilizer & Chemical Association
Supply · Service · Stewardship

More on Fall N

We appreciate hearing from our members regarding Fall N best management practices.  Many of you shared with us that you and your customers were not aware that there were major changes made with regard to the timing of fall N applications, mainly waiting until the soil reaches 50 degrees. 

We have posted an excerpt from the new Illinois agronomy handbook at the IFCA home page at  In concert with the handbook, IFCA recommends that fall N not be applied until the soil temps reach and will stay below 50 degrees, and we also recommend the use of nitrogen stabilizers for all fall applied N to further protect against nitrate loss.  Research shows that heavily tiled fields are the most susceptible to nitrate loss from fall applied N so good stewardship is critical for these fields.   

Also, we asked the State Water Survey to update the soil temperature map to remove the yellow color when the temps are between 60 and 50.  If you go to and click on the Soil Temperature link, you will see that the maps now only show red for anything above 50 degrees and green for temps below 50 degrees.  We hope this helps you and also provides another tool to educate your customers.