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Effects of Irrigation Water Quality and Nitrogen Rate on the Recovery of 15N Fertilizer by Sorghum in Field Study

Khelil, Mohamed Naceur, Rejeb, Saloua, Henchi, Belgacem, Destain, Jean Pierre
Communications in soil science and plant analysis 2013 v.44 no.18 pp. 2647-2655
Sorghum bicolor subsp. drummondii, ammonium nitrate, fertilizer rates, field experimentation, irrigation water, nitrogen, nitrogen fertilizers, soil, wastewater, wastewater irrigation, water quality
The effects of ¹⁵N-labeled ammonium nitrate on yield, uptake of nitrogen (N) by sorghum (Sorghum sudanense , Piper), and on N remaining in the soil were studied in a field experiment with different N rates (0, 50, and 100 kg N ha ⁻¹) and with two irrigation water qualities, well water (WW) and treated wastewater (TWW). Treated wastewater irrigation increased dry matter and N yield compared to WW. At equal N rates, recovery of ¹⁵N-labeled fertilizer by plants increased with TWW irrigation compared to WW (36% versus 23%). Neither fertilizer rate nor water quality had an effect on the ¹⁵N-labeled fertilizer remaining in the 0- to 60-cm layer of soil. On average 41% in the TWW treatment (49–33%) and 38% in WW treatment was mostly present in the surface 20-cm layer. Losses of ¹⁵N-labeled fertilizer were unaffected by irrigation water quality (35%) and increased with N application rate in TWW (4% versus 31%).