Compost application in form of pre-planting incorporation limits nutrient use efficiency in upland rice propagation. Supplying nutrients to crop as required enforces realization of yield potential of field crop. Field study was carried out between 2009 and 2010 planting seasons to investigate the response of upland rice cultivars to split application of compost at varying growth phases in derived savannah agro-zone. Cattle dung + maize stover compost was applied in two splits of different growth phases (Pre-planting, tillering and panicle exertion, tillering and booting, panicle exertion and booting) to three upland rice cultivars - NERICAI, NERICA II and Ofada. The study was laid out in randomized complete block design with three replicates. Data were collected on growth, dry matter, nutrient uptake concentrations and grain yield. Data were analyzed using Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) and the significant means were compared with Least Significant Difference (LSD) at p = 0.05. The results showed that compost application at active vegetative periods (Tillering to booting) promoted better LAI (1027.89), number of leaves (23.94) and tillers (5.11). The response of the three upland rice cultivars to varying time of compost application revealed that split application of compost had significant effect on yield components of upland rice cultivars. Uptake concentration of N (11.49mg/kg) and P (8.65mg/kg) were significantly highest in rice field fertilized at panicle exertion and booting growth.