Nutrient Management

What is Nutrient Managment Planning?

Nutrient management refers to the use of manure and other fertilizers to meet crop nutrient needs, while reducing the potential for them to run off fields to lakes, streams and groundwater. It helps assure that crops get the right amount of nutrients -- nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, often referred to as N-P-K -- at the right time and place. This benefits the farmer by improving crop yields and reducing costs and benefits the environment by keeping nutrients on fields and preventing them from running off to streams or down to groundwater. 

In Wisconsin, ALL farms should have a nutrient management plan. Some farms will follow a nutrient management plan if they:

  • Participate in the Farmland Preservation Program
  • Are offered cost-sharing to develop a plan
  • Accept cost-sharing for manure storage systems
  • Are large livestock operations that require a Wisconsin Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit
  • Are regulated under a local ordinance for manure storage or livestock siting

Click on the following link to print or manually fill out the Nutrient Management ChecklistSend a copy of your completed Nutrient Managment checklist to: Columbia County Land & Water Conservation Department, 112 E. Edgewater Street, Portage WI 53901 OR email it to



REMINDER: Nutrient Management Plans Due June 1st


Columbia County Chapter 11 requires farmers to meet agricultural performance standards on their farm including nutrient management. Having a nutrient management plan on file with the Columbia County Land and Water Conservation Department is also a requirement for operating a manure storage facility or being a participant in the Farmland Preservation Program. Updated nutrient management plan for 2024 must be submitted to our office by June 1, 2024.
If you hire a consultant to write your plan, please contact them immediately to ensure they have started to work on updating your plan and will be submitting it to our office by June 1st.
If you rent your land, please discuss this with your operator to ensure an updated plan will be submitted to our office by June 1st.
If you write your own plan, please contact our department for submission requirements. One on one assistance may be available as well.
Thank you for your efforts in maintaining a productive farm and protecting land and water resources. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Todd Rietmann or Shaina Klosterman (608) 742-9670.