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Influence of Late-Season Foliar Nitrogen Applications on Grain Protein in Winter Wheat

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Influence of Late-Season Foliar Nitrogen Applications on Grain Protein in Winter Wheat. C.W. Woolfolk, W.R. Raun, G.V. Johnson E.G. Krenzer, and W.E. Thomason. Oklahoma State University Department of Plant and Soil Sciences. Introduction.

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slide1
Influence of Late-Season Foliar Nitrogen Applications on Grain Protein in Winter Wheat

C.W. Woolfolk, W.R. Raun, G.V. Johnson

E.G. Krenzer, and W.E. Thomason

Oklahoma State University

Department of Plant and Soil Sciences

introduction
Introduction
  • Increasing grain protein in higher yielding wheat varieties while maintaining yields is often difficult
  • Efficient utilization of nitrogen fertilizers is imperative for human nutrition (Smil 1997)
  • Grain protein increases occur when foliar nitrogen is applied at anthesis and rapidly declines before or after that time (Finney et al., 1957)
  • Gaseous nitrogen losses from wheat leaves occurs between anthesis and maturity (Harper et al., 1987)
  • Maximum N accumulation generally occurs at flowering
objectives
Objectives
  • To determine the effects of late-season nitrogen applications at four rates and two N sources on:
          • grain yield
          • grain protein
          • straw yield
          • straw N
materials and methods
Materials and Methods
  • Application type
    • simulated aerial
    • 175 ml mechanically pressurized spray bottles
  • Nitrogen source
    • Urea Ammonium Nitrate: no dilution-28% N
    • Ammonium Sulfate: 700g in 1,000ml H20-11%N
  • Wheat (Triticum aestivum L.)
    • “Tonkawa” hard red winter
  • Cropping system
    • conventional tillage
materials and methods1
Materials and Methods
  • Experimental sites: Efaw, OK and Perkins,OK
  • Experimental design: RCBD, 4 replications
    • Plot size: 7.43 m2
  • N Source and rate:
    • UAN: 0, 11, 22, 33, 44 kg N ha-1
    • AS: 22 kg N ha-1
  • Timing of application:
    • Pre-flowering: Feekes 10.5
    • Post-flowering: Feekes 10.5.4
slide6
Feekes growth stages in

cereal grains

Large, 1954

10.5

Pre

10.5.4

Post

materials and methods2
Materials and Methods

Treatment structure employed at both sites for both years

slide8
Efaw 1998

Grain yield, kg ha-1

SED=220

N rate, kg ha-1

Protein, %

SED=0.22

slide9
Perkins 1998

Grain yield, kg ha-1

SED=302

N rate, kg ha-1

Protein, %

SED=0.53

slide10
Efaw 1999

Grain yield, kg ha-1

SED=213

N rate, kg ha-1

Protein, %

SED=0.52

slide11
Perkins 1999

Grain yield, kg ha-1

SED=380

N rate, kg ha-1

Protein, %

SED=0.92

slide12
Results

Significant increases due to foliar applied N

  • Grain yield
      • 1 out of 4: UAN-linear (post-flowering, Efaw 1999)

UAN-quadratic (pre-flowering, Efaw 1999)

  • Straw yield
      • 1 out of 4: UAN-quadratic (pre-flowering, Efaw 1998)
  • Straw N
      • 2 out of 4: UAN-linear (post-flowering, Perkins 1998)

UAN-linear (pre-flowering, Perkins 1999)

slide13
Results

Significant increases due to foliar applied N

  • Grain protein
      • 1 out of 4: AS (pre and post-flowering, Perkins 1998)
      • 3 out of 4: UAN-linear (pre-flowering; 33 kg ha-1)
      • 4 out of 4: UAN-linear (post-flowering; 33 kg ha-1)
slide14
Conclusions
  • Increased grain protein was observed at 33 kg N ha-1 in three out of four experiments when N was applied pre-flowering (2.05%)
  • Increased grain protein was observed at 33 kg N ha-1 in all experiments when N was applied post-flowering (1.57%)
  • In general, grain yield, straw yield, and straw N were not affected by foliar N applications
  • Foliar N applications prior to or immediately following flowering may significantly enhance protein contents
slide15
Applied Calculation

[email protected]% N: $0.48/kg Nx 33 kg N/ha (Post) = $16/ha

Aerial application: = $ 9/ha

Total application cost = $25/ha

12% protein: $106.50/ton x 2.688 tons/ha (Avg) = $286/ha

14% protein: $124.90/ton x 2.688 tons/ha (Avg) = $336/ha

Difference = $50/ha

$25/ha profit

future research
Future Research
  • More in-depth focus on post-flowering applications
  • Alternative methods for increasing yield while increasing protein-(KH2PO4) applied to delay senescence
  • Focus on products which decrease N losses and can be applied simultaneously with foliar N applications
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