Relative Efficiency of Broadcast and Banded Phosphorus for Sweet Corn Produced on Histosols
- C. A. Sanchez ,
- P. S. Porter and
- M. F. Ulloa
Histosols used extensively for crop production are often hydrologically linked to environmentally sensitive wetlands, making it imperative that management strategies be developed to improve the efficiency of fertilizer P. Furthermore, sweet corn (Zea mays L.) produced on Florida Histosols is grown in rotation with sugarcane (Saccharum spp.), which responds negatively to high P. Reduction of the P rates applied to sweet corn would increase the compatibility of this common crop rotation. Studies were conducted across six site-seasons during 1988 and 1989 to evaluate the relative efficiency of broadcast and banded P for sweet corn. Broadcast and banded P rates were 0, 25, 50, 75, and 100 kg P ha−1. Broadcast P was surface applied and disked into the soil before planting. Banded P was applied ≈3 cm below the corn seeds in bands mixed with soil in an approximate diameter of 5 cm. Sweet corn responded to P when soiltest P levels were below 1.2 g m−3. Total marketable yields, yield of U.S. Fancy, and quality parameters of sweet corn ears were increased by P rate and affected by placement in four of the six site-seasons. Band placement reduced the amount of P required for a specified sweet corn yield and also appeared to result in higher total yield. The relative efficiency of banded to broadcast P depended on soiltest P level. The relative efficiency was greater than 3:1 (band/broadcast) when soil-test P was <0.2 g m−3 but approached 1:1 as soil-test P increased to 1.2 g m−3. Overall, results indicate that banding P is, indeed, a viable strategy to reduce the amount of P used for sweet corn production on Histosols.Please view the pdf by using the Full Text (PDF) link under 'View' to the left.
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