Dairy Compost Utilization

Stephens County Demonstration

Contact Information:
Stephens County Extension Office
(254) 559-2313

Location: High school football practice field, 500 block 2nd Street, Breckenridge, Texas

Composter: Producers Compost

Plot map: 50' by 100'

1 2 3
2 1 3
3 2 1

Treatments (Rep 3 times):

  1. Inorganic Nitrogen @ 60 lb N per acre
  2. Compost @ 40 tons per acre plus Inorganic Nitrogen @ 20 lb N per acre
  3. Compost @ 40 tons per acre


Nine plots were established on a high school football practice field in Breckenridge, Texas. The treatments were replicated three times and randomly assigned to the nine plots. The compost spreader and scales were calibrated to ensure accurate rates of compost were applied. Compost was applied with a tractor pulled rotary spreader.

Treatment 1 plots were treated only with inorganic fertilizer at a rate of 60 lb N per acre.

Plots in treatment 2 were applied with dairy compost at a rate of 40 tons per acre, followed by inorganic fertilizer at a rate of 20 lbs N per acre.

Treatment 3 plots were applied with compost at a rate of 40 tons per acre and did not receive a supplemental application of inorganic nitrogen. Photo documentation of treatment 3 illustrates at close range the density of compost at the 40 ton per acre rate.


Visual assessment of turf stand, density, color and weed presence was collected on field throughout summer and fall growing season. Overall health of practice field vegetation has improved across all treatments. Specifically, turf density improved following treatments and the improvement was sustained even after athletic activity was resumed this school year. Additional visual data will be collected (on a less frequent basis) in the spring and summer of 2005.

Compost Analysis:

% % % % % % ppm ppm ppm ppm % % umhos/cm
1.145 0.5035 1.7872 9.6193 0.6569 0.5852 207 6491 61.63 433 73 29.9 9.1 6700
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