Manure is one of several types of Fertilizers in Farming Simulator 15.
Manure can also be used to increase the income from Greenhouses. A Greenhouse supplied with both Water and Manure will yield $80 an hour. Without water, the Manure supplied to a Greenhouse will be completely wasted, without any income.
Manure is generated as a byproduct of Cow husbandry, as long as the Cows are provided with Straw bedding. Manure accumulates slowly in a special holding area, and must be shoveled into the Manure Spreader with the use of a Front Loader. There is no other way to create or acquire Manure. Once created, however, it is absolutely free of charge.
Though essentially free, Manure is unfortunately the least efficient fertilizer. It takes a long time to generate (unless you have plenty of Cows), and requires a lot of work. Furthermore, the equipment to spread it is highly inefficient, and will need to be constantly refilled when working nearly any field. It is a very cheap choice of fertilizer for the early game, but you pay for it with hard work.
Manure is Straw that has absorbed cow feces and urine, to become a highly dense compound of nitrates and other materials that are very nutritional for plant growth. Manure is collected out of a Cow Pasture, and stored in an open-air pile that can then be taken to the fields for fertilization.
Manure is spread out on a field using a Manure Spreader. This machine is a simple open-top hopper that can eject the manure out the back. When dragged over a field, it will fertilize the crops and make them grow healthier - and more profitable.
Creating Manure Edit
There is only one way to create Manure in the base game: as a byproduct of Cow husbandry. There is no other way to acquire Manure, although Hired Workers can buy it automatically out of nowhere, for a prohibitively high price.
Manure is automatically created at the Cow Pasture as long as it contains at least one Cow, and as long as the cow shed contains any amount of Straw. The more Cows you have, the more Manure will be created. Manure is created constantly, at a rate of about 190 liters per Cow, per day. This rate is not affected by the Cows' current Productivity level.
The required Straw can be acquired for free, as a byproduct of harvesting Wheat and Barley crops. It is left behind the Harvesters as it reaps the crops. The Harvester must be set to produce a "Straw Swath" for this to occur. Straw is completely free, since its production does not reduce the yield of Wheat or Barley crops.
The resulting Straw can be picked up by a Loading Wagon in loose form, or by a Baler in bale form. Either of these forms of Straw can then be taken to the Cow Pasture, where it can be dumped into the cow shed. The game tracks the amount of Straw in the shed, which will decrease over time as Manure is produced from it. Also note that Straw bedding increases Cow productivity by a small amount, so the Cows will also produce more Milk.
As long as there is at least 1 liter of Straw in the cow shed, the Cows will produce Manure regularly. If the Straw level reaches 0, Manure production will stop immediately. Manure collects into a small enclosure right next to the Cow Pasture. This enclosure can contain up to 100,000 liters of Manure. When full, no more Manure will be created until any of the existing Manure is removed.
Manure is one of a variety of chemicals that can be used to increase crop yields. It can be spread on a field like other fertilizers, but can also be used to double the income from crops in a Greenhouse.
Fertilizing Fields Edit
There are three different Manure Spreaders in the game, differing from one another in capacity and working width only. The specific Manure Spreader you choose will affect how much extra work you'll need to do to put the Manure to good use.
Once a Manure Spreader is purchased and attached to a tractor, it must be filled with Manure at the enclosure next to the Cow Pasture. This can only be done by using a Front Loader to shovel the Manure into the Spreader.
The full Spreader is then towed to the field. This can be done either before or after the field has been cultivated and/or sown. Activating the spreader, whether or not you are already on the field, will begin draining Manure from the tank, so act quickly.
Fertilizing Greenhouses Edit
A Greenhouse can generate a steady, hourly income. In order to do this, it must be supplied with Water. In addition, it can also be supplied with Manure to double that income.
Each Greenhouse has an empty wooden box next to it. This box is where Manure can be dumped. To see the amount of Manure in the box, you'll need to move next to the water tank that is near the box. This will show the content of the water tank as well as the manure box.
Putting Manure into the box can be tricky, as it requires a Front Loader or similar device to shovel Manure into the box. There is no way to transport Manure in bulk to the Greenhouse; the only Manure-related vehicles in the base game are Manure Spreaders, and these cannot put Manure in the box, nor can a Front Loader remove Manure from a Spreader. Therefore, the Front Loader will need to shovel Manure out of the enclosure at the Cow Pasture, and transport it all the way to the Greenhouse. This can be tedious work, especially when using a small Front Loader, so consider putting your Greenhouses as close to the Cow Pasture as possible. This also gives them fast access to Water, since there is a Water Trough near the pasture as well.
The Front Loader will need to dump the Manure accurately into the box. Spilling the Manure outside the box will cause it to be wasted. This is even trickier if the Greenhouse is improperly placed - it's possible for the box to be too high off the ground for your Front Loaders to reach, instead requiring a Telehandler that can extend its arm high enough. Keep this in mind when placing Greenhouses.
A single Greenhouse manure box can hold up to 3,000 liters of Manure at any time. Manure will be consumed at a rate of 44 liters per hour, every round hour.
As long as the Greenhouse has both Water and Manure, it will yield an automatic income of $80. With only water, that income would be only $40. Note that if there is no Water in the greenhouse, it will not yield any income at all - but will continue consuming the same amount of Manure. This wastes the Manure, and should not be allowed to happen.
Effectiveness and Economy Edit
All four available types of fertilizer are equally effective at increasing crop yields. The only difference between them are their availability, cost, and spreading time.
Manure is one of the cheapest options, since the fertilizer itself costs no money - it is simply a byproduct of raising Cows, which are actually money-making machines on their own. Manure-Spreading equipment is also somewhat cheap. Of course, this requires you to first purchase Cows, provide them with Straw bedding, and then wait a considerably long time for the Manure itself to accumulate to sufficient quantities. Therefore, instead of paying money for the substance itself, you will be paying money for the infrastructure to produce it. Once that infrastructure is in place, however, Manure is effectively free.
Another problem with Manure is the equipment used to spread it on the field. For starters, Manure Spreaders can only be filled with Manure at the Cow Pasture, and you must manually operate a Front Loader to shovel the material into the machine - a time-consuming task that requires some skill. Furthermore, the smaller Manure Spreaders can't even work an entire hectare of land before they run out of Manure, which means they will constantly need to be taken back to the Pasture for more refilling. The largest Manure Spreader is not that much larger, either. The amount of work involved in Manure Spreading is therefore inversely proportional to its price: it's a free fertilizer that requires a lot of work.
There is also the question of general availability. Even a large number of Cows will take quite some time to produce a lot of Manure, meaning that you could easily run out of Manure after fertilizing just a couple of hectares of land, and would have to wait a long time for more of it to be produced.
Note also that any Manure work done by Hired Workers must be closely supervised. If the Hired Worker runs out of Manure at any point, he will begin to purchase additional manure automatically in order to continue working. This extra Manure is extremely expensive, potentially making the entire venture unprofitable. A hectare's worth of Manure will cost upwards of $30,000 - which is well more than a hectare of fertilized land could possibly give back in profits.
In summation, Manure is one of the most work-intensive types of fertilizers in the game, but makes up for it by having no running costs. If you branch into Cow husbandry early enough, Manure can give you a cheap way to fertilize your crops, assuming you are willing to put up with all the work it entails. Otherwise, consider using Solid Fertilizer early on (expensive, but extremely easy to use). In the later game, the Slurry that your cows produce would probably be far more effective than Manure - and is also free.