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Crop utilization of placed and broadcast nitrogen 15 labeled urea fertilizer under zero and conventional tillage


, : Crop utilization of placed and broadcast nitrogen 15 labeled urea fertilizer under zero and conventional tillage. Canadian Journal of Soil Science 64(4): 563-570

Growth chamber and field studies were conducted to assess the relative utilization of placed and broadcast 15N-urea by spring wheat. The field studies were conducted on zero and conventional (shallow) tillage systems, of 4-yr duration, located on chernozemic soils at 2 locations in Saskatchewan [Canada]. Placement below the seeding depth in comparison to broadcast application, generally reduced fertilizer N immobilization and increased fertilizer N uptake, recovery and efficiency. Under moisture stress, placed applications were effective in enhancing dry matter yield and total N uptake. Fertilizer N placement for these 2 contrasting tillage systems should be identical, thus some soil disturbance under zero tillage may be necessary to achieve optimum crop use of applied fertilizer N. The dominant N transformation processes and possible tillage induced differences, in regard to methods of N application, are discussed.

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