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Agronomy Journal Abstract - Nitrogen Management

Response of Coastal Bermudagrass Yield and Nutrient Uptake Efficiency to Nitrogen Sources


This article in AJ

  1. Vol. 99 No. 3, p. 707-714
    Received: July 7, 2006

    * Corresponding author(s): mlas@ufl.edu
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  1. Maria L. Silveira *a,
  2. Vincent A. Habyb and
  3. Allen T. Leonardb
  1. a Univ. of Florida, Range Cattle Research and Education Center, 3401 Experiment Station, Ona, FL 33865
    b Texas Agricultural Experiment Station, Texas A&M Univ. System, P.O. Box 200, Overton, TX 75684-0200


Nitrogen is an important agronomic input for bermudagrass production in the southern USA. Fertilizers that can efficiently provide N to grass pastures and hay meadows are an important issue because of increasing costs and environmental problems associated with N losses. This experiment was designed to determine the effectiveness of various N sources on ‘Coastal’ bermudagrass [Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers.] production and N uptake efficiency. Nitrogen was applied at 0, 45, 90, and 135 kg ha−1 harvest−1 as urea–ammonium nitrate (UAN), urea, ammonium nitrate (AN) and ammonium sulfate (AS) on Gallime (Glossic Paleudalf) and Lilbert (Plinthic Paleudult) soils. Mixtures of S with UAN and of Ca and B with urea were also evaluated. Bermudagrass was periodically harvested and subsampled for total N analysis. At termination of the study soil samples were collected for pH and extractable NO3–N analyses. Bermudagrass yield responses to N sources were significant only in the Gallime soil. In this soil, AN and AS increased yields and resulted in greater N uptake compared to urea and UAN. Lilbert soil showed no effect of N sources on dry matter (DM) production. There was a yield response to N rates and maximum bermudagrass production was generally achieved at the 90 kg ha−1 N rate regrowth−1 Fertilizer efficiency declined as the N rate was increased. Soil acidity increased in response to N application, particularly for the AS treatments. Selection of N sources and rates should be carefully planned to avoid detrimental effects on soil acidity and, consequently, fertilizer efficiency.

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