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Soil Science Society of America Journal Abstract -

Uptake, Translocation and Utilization of 15N-Depleted Fertilizer in Irrigated Corn1


This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 43 No. 3, p. 528-533
    Received: Aug 30, 1978
    Accepted: Dec 14, 1978

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  1. Manuel Bigeriego,
  2. R. D. Hauck and
  3. Robert A. Olson2



The objective of this study was to derive a better understanding of the manner in which N serves the nutritional needs of corn (Zea mays L.) and thereby afford a basis for improved fertilization practices. Measurements of uptake, translocation and utilization of tagged nitrogen (N) fertilizer in irrigated corn as influenced by time and rate of N application were made in a field experiment at the University of Nebraska Field Laboratory. Plant parts of root, crown, foliage, and eventually ear and grain were taken and analyzed for total N, NO3--N and isotope ratio at eight growth stages.

Application of N at planting resulted in greater vegetative production, but summer sidedressed N effected slightly larger grain production with a higher grain/stover ratio. Isotope ratio analyses revealed significantly greater utilization of fertilizer N in grain production with delayed application due to more active root uptake and translocation of the fertilizer source during the grain filling period.

Following harvest, residual mineral N in soil from applied fertilizer was greater with summer sidedressing such that 24% more of the N applied could be accounted for in the crop and soil than with planting time application.

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