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This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 62 No. 3, p. 683-690
    Received: Apr 17, 1997

    * Corresponding author(s): wrr@agr.okstate.edu
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Microvariability in Soil Test, Plant Nutrient, and Yield Parameters in Bermudagrass

  1. W. R. Raun ,
  2. G. V. Johnson,
  3. H. L. Lees,
  4. H. Sembiring,
  5. S. B. Phillips,
  6. J. B. Solie,
  7. M. L. Stone and
  8. R. W. Whitney
  1. Dep. of Plant and Soil Sciences
    Dep. of Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering, Oklahoma State Univ., Stillwater, OK 74078



The scale or resolution where distinct differences in soil test and yield parameters can be detected has not been thoroughly evaluated in crop production systems. This study was conducted to determine if large differences in soil test and forage yield parameters were present within small areas (<1 m2). A 2.13 by 21.33 m area was selected for intensive forage and soil sampling from two bermudagrass [Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers.] pasture sites (Burneyville and Efaw, OK). Each 2.13 by 21.33 m area was partitioned into 490, 0.30 by 0.30 m (1 by 1 ft) subplots. Bermudagrass forage was hand harvested at ground level from each 0.30 by 0.30 m subplot. Prior to forage harvest, spectral radiance readings (red, 671 ± 6 nm; green, 550 ± 6 nm; and near infrared, 780 ± 6 nm) were recorded from each subplot. Composite samples composed of eight soil cores, 0 to 15 cm deep and 1.9 cm in diameter, were collected from each subplot. At both locations, bermudagrass forage yield harvested from 0.30 by 0.30 m subplots ranged from <1300 to >10 000 kg ha−1. Soil pH ranged from 4.37 to 6.29 within the 2.12 by 21.33 m area at Burneyville and 5.37 to 6.34 at Efaw. No P or K fertilizer would have been recommended at Efaw using mean soil test P and K. The range in recommended fertilizer rates would have been 0 to 31 and 0 to 17 kg P ha−1 and 0 to 107 and 0 to 108 kg K ha−1 at Burneyville and Efaw, respectively, if recommendations were based on individual 0.30 by 0.30 m grid data. Significant differences in surface soil test analyses were found when samples were <1 m apart for both mobile and immobile nutrients.

Contribution from the Oklahoma Agric. Exp. Stn.

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