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Sugarbeet Yield and Nitrogen Use Efficiency with Preplant Broadcast, Banded, or Point-Injected Nitrogen Application
- Stevens, W.B., Blaylock, A.D., Krall, J.M., Hopkins, B.G., Ellsworth, J.W.
- Agronomy journal 2007 v.99 no.5 pp. 1252
- Beta vulgaris, sugar beet, crop yield, nitrogen, plant nutrition, nutrient use efficiency, nitrogen fertilizers, fertilizer rates, application methods, nutrient management, crop quality, sucrose, soil treatment, Wyoming
- Rising fertilizer costs and environmental concerns have heightened the need to improve N management in furrow-irrigated sugarbeet (Beta vulgaris L.) production. A study was conducted at two Wyoming locations to compare the effect of different preplant N placement strategies on yield, quality, and N use efficiency (NUE). Nitrogen was applied at rates from 0 to 358 kg ha-1 using three different placement strategies: broadcast and incorporated (BI), knife-banded (KB) 18 cm from the seed row, or point-injected (PI) 8 cm from the seed row. Placement had no consistent effect on root sucrose content. Point injection produced the greatest maximum predicted yield (YMAX) in five of six N responsive site-years with an average advantage of 603 and 975 kg ha-1 sucrose compared to BI and KB, respectively. The amount of N required for maximum sucrose yield ranged from about 10 to 100 kg N ha-1 less for PI than for other placement methods. For site-years where a response to N occurred, NUE was highest with PI, intermediate with KB (19% less than PI), and lowest with BI (28% less than PI). The advantage of PI, which placed N closer to the seed row than the other methods, was attributed to less leaching and greater uptake of N during early growth stages when the sugarbeet has little lateral root development. It was concluded that PI is an effective tool for maintaining high N concentration in the root zone for optimum early vegetative growth at lower N rates, thus improving NUE in sugarbeet production.