Eight fertilizer regimes comprising traditional and recommended alternatives were evaluated on three farms during the 1985/86 cropping season. In terms of marketable yield, the currently recommended practice of pen manure with all P205 and one half N and K20 at planting, with the remainder at first weeding was significantly better than all other treatments. The alternative, pen manure only, was second best, while the recommended practice without pen manure ranked third. However, in terms of economics, marginal rates of return for these treatments relative to the control were 649, 992 and 429 per cent, respectively. Although the riskiness of the treatments were not explicitly considered, the high marginal rates of return should motivate even risk averse farmers.