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Environmental influences on optimum nitrogen fertiliser rates for temperate dairy pastures


Pembleton, KG and Rawnsley, RP and Burkitt, LL, Environmental influences on optimum nitrogen fertiliser rates for temperate dairy pastures, European Journal of Agronomy, 45 pp. 132-141. ISSN 1161-0301 (2013) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2012 Elsevier B.V.

DOI: doi:10.1016/j.eja.2012.09.006


Considerable variability in the yield response of temperate dairy pastures to the strategic use of nitrogen (N) fertiliser has been observed reviously. Some of this variation could potentially be attributed to environmental effects on the available N (soil mineral N plus fertiliser N) concentration required to optimise pasture growth. Five nitrogen application rate response field experiments were undertaken in an attempt to elucidate the environmental influence on pasture mineral N requirements. A significant response to N fertiliser application rate was detected in four out of the five experiments. The absence of a significant response in one experiment can be attributed to limited water availability. Across the experiments where a significant response to N fertiliser rate was detected the available N that was required to achieve 90% of maximum yield ranged between 60 and 81 kg N/ha. It is concluded that when water availability, soil temperatures and air temperatures are conducive to pasture growth an available N level of between 60 and 81 kg N/ha should be targeted when N fertiliser is used strategically to optimise pasture growth. Soil N testing results should be interpreted in light of the prevailing climatic and edaphic conditions if they are to be used to guide N fertiliser rate decisions within intensively managed temperate pastures.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:nitrogen response, soil nitrogen testing, temperate pastures, inorganic nitrogen fertiliser, Tasmania, Australia
Research Division:Agricultural, Veterinary and Food Sciences
Research Group:Crop and pasture production
Research Field:Agronomy
Objective Division:Animal Production and Animal Primary Products
Objective Group:Pasture, browse and fodder crops
Objective Field:Pasture, browse and fodder crops not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Pembleton, KG (Dr Keith Pembleton)
UTAS Author:Rawnsley, RP (Dr Richard Rawnsley)
ID Code:74309
Year Published:2013
Web of Science® Times Cited:18
Deposited By:Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture
Deposited On:2011-11-18
Last Modified:2017-11-06

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