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Soil Science Society of America Journal Abstract -

The Effect of Fertilizer Treatment upon the Type of Flora Found upon Decomposing Plant Tissues1


This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 3 No. C, p. 183-186

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  1. R. G. Harris,
  2. D. E. Haley and
  3. J. J. Reid2



Although the data at hand are based largely on a crop produced in one season, it is felt that the information presents certain significant trends.

With potash as the only variable in the fertilizer treatment the eight plots studied produced flue-cured tobacco varying in chemical composition according to the treatment.

According to the quality of the tobacco produced as judged by price received the eight plots could be placed conveniently in three groups.

Separation upon chemical analyses and bacteriological examination gave the same grouping as that based upon quality.

High quality tobacco was produced where an adequate but not excessive amount of potash was incorporated in the fertilizer treatment. The N/K ratio of such tobacco was found to be approximately 1.

“Rough” Gram-negative rods were found to be characteristic of Piedmont flue-cured tobacco that is high in nitrogen and low in soluble carbohydrates.

“Smooth” Gram-negative rods characterize the high potash, low nitrogen tobacco of the Piedmont.

Well-balanced fertilization from the standpoint of crop quality produced a tobacco upon which both “smooth” and “rough” Gram-negative rods appeared and in addition organisms not found on tobacco produced with unbalanced treatments.

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