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Planner Resources

We've added this content to the website's nutrient management section to help certified planners find references, documents, tables and other information useful in developing plans. Links to presentations from DCR nutrient management continuing education meetings are listed below. Links to program related sites, such as NutMan 3.0, also are listed.

Feel free to suggest other information that could be added here.

For All Planners

Presentations from DCR Continuing Education meetings

Approved Soil Testing Laboratories

Section 4VAC50-85-140.A.2.f of the Nutrient Management Training and Certification Regulations states "Representative soil analysis results for fields shall be determined by using standard soil sampling and analysis methods according to Methods of Soil Analysis, Part 3, Chemical Methods, 1996 utilizing the Mehlich I extraction procedure for phosphorus or other methods and laboratories approved by the department and correlated to Mehlich I and utilizing correlation procedures contained in Virginia Nutrient Management Standards and Criteria, revised June 2014."

DCR maintains this list of labs that meet regulation requirements. The list is provided for users' convenience; presence on the list does not imply endorsement by DCR. Those running labs may have theirs added this list by contacting DCR's nutrient management staff, who will evaluate the lab for approval.

Hydrologic Unit Map Website

Click here to get hydrologic unit codes. The interface's allows users to search for and download data for their particular area - it is no longer necessary for users to download an entire county map.

Agriculture-specific Information

Biosecurity Procedures for Farm Visits to Animal Operations

This document describes how to ensure a safe and hygienic visit to farms with animal operations in order to prevent the spread of infections material and agents.

NutMan 3.0 Software

Click here for NutMan 3.0 installation files, released on Jan. 8, 2013. This version has recently modified soil survey data. It also has updated "Special Conditions" documents for VPA and VPDES-permitted animal operations.

To ensure a smooth and quick download, the installation file has been compressed. You'll need to right-click on the link above and save the file locally in order to install the program.

Agriculture Training School Presentations

Here's a list of presentation (PDF documents) given at the Agriculture Training School. If you have any questions, please contact Dave Kindig or the presenter.

Soil Science, Soil Fertility, Crop Production School

Agriculture Plan Writing School

Getting Started Writing Plans

If you are new to writing plans, only occasionally write plans or have struggled with initial farm visits to gather the information needed to write a plan, Nutrient Management Plan Writing can help. It includes a general description of the components of a nutrient management plan and several forms to use to ensure that you obtain the information needed to write a plan. The information gathered through these forms should supply everything needed for the NutMan3.0 software used to complete data entry for writing a plan.

If you plan to use the Phosphorus Index (P-Index) as a tool to manage nutrient applications, you'll need some information that's not covered by the forms. You'll need to gather this information when you inspect your client's fields. In the NutMan software, the window for entering P-Index information is under the Farm Edit Window > Fields > P-Index tab.

The specific information NutMan needs to calculate the P-Index includes: distance to stream or riparian buffer width; annual soil loss using RUSLE II; any fields in continuous no-till; and any conservation practices associated with row crop-small grain production or pasture management.

Contacts for Plan Reviews

Most plans don't need to be reviewed. They can be presented to the farmer after you've reviewed them for errors and applied the best plan-writing options so that your client gets the best production and well-managed application of nutrients.

In some cases, plans written for permitted animal operations and for state lands that receive nutrients must be approved before they are presented to the client. Also, there is a specific set of conditions in which plans written for bio-solid applications must be approved. The following specialists review plans specific to their area of responsibility. Feel free to contact them as you write plans so that issues that might later require corrections can be avoided, thus expediting approval.

Permitted Confined Animal Feeding Operations

Bobby Long
P.O. Box 130
Phenix, VA 23959
Phone: 434-547-8172

Plan Reviews for Biosolids Field Applications

Nicholas (Nick) Moody
Dept. of Conservation and Recreation
600 E. Main St., 4th Floor
Richmond, VA 23219
Phone: 804-371-6133

State Lands, Turf and Landscape Plans

Derik Cataldi
Dept. of Conservation and Recreation
600 East Main Street, 4th Floor
Richmond, VA 23219
Office number: 804-371-7489

Plans Written for Cost Share Practices

Some plans cover cost-share practices with specifications that require prior approval by a Soil and Water Conservation District. Most districts employ a certified planner who reviews plans closely to make sure the plan is written to meet the specifications of the practice. For instance, if a farmer has signed up for a "Cover Crop Practice," the plan needs to contain cover crops in the rotation and be specific to the fields listed in the cost-share contract.

First, always make sure that your client knows when he or she is applying for cost-share practices that require a plan. Second, it would be wise for you to contact the SWCD where the plan will be submitted to find out who will be reviewing it. Talk to that person about issues commonly found in such plans. Be aware that there may be other requirements that need to be added into the plan in order to meet specifications of the practice or that are needed to ensure that the plan reviewed by district is written so that the practice can be approved for payment. As plan writer, it is your responsibility to meet these added requirements as stated here: 4VAC 5-15-140.G. The nutrient management planner shall incorporate additional more restrictive plan requirements if required by other specific legislative, regulatory or incentive programs which apply to a specific operator.

New Manure Sample Forms

DCR will pay for the processing of two manure samples per client. Those needing more than two tests should contact the Clemson University lab to arrange for payment of the additional samples. Samples must be sent to the Agricultural Service Laboratory at Clemson. Click here to visit the lab's website where you'll find useful information about the collection and handling of manure samples, as well as the form you'll need to fill out for the DCR-paid samples. Be sure to completely fill in the form.

Special Conditions for Nutrient Management Plans

Plan-writing Guidance Documents

The documents listed below were developed to address specific issues, identified by planners, so that planners consistently address those issues. The documents are given to planners when they become certified as well as when they attend the Nutrient Management Agriculture Plan Writing schools. DCR posts the documents here, too, for the convenience of planners.

Turf and Landscape-specific Information

Turf and Landscape Training School Presentations

Here's a list of presentations (PDF documents) given at the Turf and Landscape Training School. If you have any questions, please contact Derik Cataldi or the presenter.

Presentations from DCR Continuing Education meetings

Handouts from DCR Continuing Education meetings, Standards and Criteria July 2014, July 11-17, 2014

Turf and Landscape Plan-writing Spreadsheets

These spreadsheets can help those writing nutrient management plans for turf and landscaped areas. The sheets are “templates.” As a certified planner, you are responsible to ensure that the information is accurate and complies with the Virginia nutrient management training and certification regulations. When you open the spreadsheet, you'll see tabs at the bottom of the screen. Here are explanations for the tabs.

Cover Sheet – Fill in this sheet first. Information from it will automatically fill in fields on other sheets, including the Cover Page.

Narrative – This is a blank page into which you write the narrative for the particular client. See Urban Nutrient Management Handbook page 13-5.

Maps – This is a blank sheet in which maps can be inserted into the plan.

Worksheet – This contains detailed recommendations for each management area developed. See Urban Nutrient Management Handbook page 13-7.

Soil Test Summary – If you use an approved lab other than Virginia Tech, fill in the that lab's result and convert that value to a Virginia Tech Fertility Rating, found in the Nutrient Management Standards and Criteria, page 39. Lab conversion information found in S&C, pages 41-42.

Reference Materials and Notes – This sheet is where you may provide additional guidance to clients on the specific needs of certain management areas. You can also include on this sheet Extension publications that further support implementation of the nutrient management recommendations.

Record Keeping – This sheet is for the client’s benefit. If the plan is written for “State Owned Lands,” it must be completed to verify implementation of that plan.

Golf course spreadsheet
General turf area spreadsheet