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Crop Science Abstract - TURFGRASS SCIENCE

Foliar Nitrogen Uptake Following Urea Application to Putting Green Turfgrass Species


This article in CS

  1. Vol. 51 No. 3, p. 1253-1260
    Received: June 28, 2010

    * Corresponding author(s): mricha@uark.edu
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  1. J. Chris Stieglera,
  2. Michael D. Richardson *b and
  3. Douglas E. Karcherb
  1. a Dep. of Soil and Crop Sciences, Texas A&M Univ., 370 Olsen Blvd., College Station, TX 77843-2474;
    b Dep. of Horticulture, Univ. of Arkansas, 316 Plant Sciences Bldg., Fayetteville, AR 72701


Foliar fertilization often comprises a significant portion of the total annual N applied to putting greens. This study was initiated to evaluate the efficiency of this practice under field conditions. 15N-labeled urea was used to quantify seasonal uptake of foliar-applied N by creeping bentgrass (Agrostis stolonifera var. L. palustris (Huds.) Farw. ‘Penn A1’) and hybrid bermudagrass (Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers. × C. transvaalensis Burtt Davy ‘Tifeagle’) managed as putting greens. Urea was spray-applied monthly, May through September, at rates of 0.5 and 1.25 g N m−2 Both species absorbed urea rapidly, with 24 to 67% of the fertilizer N entering the foliage within 1 h following treatment; peak foliar absorption was generally observed at 4 h after treatment. Percentage of foliar uptake was significantly reduced at higher application rates for both species. In addition, absorption of urea-N by foliage of both species was affected by month of application and year. When averaged across all sampling times and N rates, foliar absorption percentages were similar between the two species, ranging from 36 to 69% for creeping bentgrass and 38 to 62% for bermudagrass. Overall, foliar absorption efficiency was variable and there were no consistent seasonal trends associated with these differences.

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