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Journal of Environmental Quality Abstract -

Timing and Rate of Fertilizer Nitrogen for Sugarbeets Related to Nitrogen Uptake and Pollution Potential1


This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 7 No. 3, p. 368-372
    Received: Sept 1, 1977

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  1. F. J. Hills,
  2. F. E. Broadbent and
  3. Maurice Fried2



Nitrogen (N) uptake by sugarbeets (Beta vulgaris L.) from fertilizer and soil, as related to time and rate of application, was evaluated at Davis, California, in two field experiments utilizing 15N-deleted ammonium sulfate. There were no significant differences in root, top, or sugar yield when fertilizer N (135 kg/ha) was applied at planting, at thinning, split equally between thinning and layby, or split equally between planting, thinning, and layby. Also, there were no substantial differences in soil or fertilizer N in tops and roots in response to these dates of application.

Fertilizer N recovery was 47% when 112 kg N/ha were applied to achieve maximum sugar yield. Roots removed as much N as that applied and tops contained an additional 105 kg N/ha. When applied N was 2.5 times the amount required for maximum sugar yield, tops and roots contained almost as much N as applied. The sugarbeet crop, carefully fertilized, has potential for alleviation of nitrate pollution of ground water.

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