Row spacing and nitrogen fertilizer effect on no-till oat production.

Lafond, G.P., May, W.E., and Holzapfel, C.B. (2013). "Row spacing and nitrogen fertilizer effect on no-till oat production.", Agronomy Journal, 105(1), pp. 1-10. doi : 10.2134/agronj2012.0221  Access to full text

Abstract

A major challenge in agriculture is to enhance crop production in an environmentally sustainable fashion to meet the needs of a growing population given the continual decline in the global arable land base. The objectives of the study were to study the interaction between row spacing and N rate in oat (Avena sativa L.) on plant establishment and development, biomass production, grain quality, and grain yield under a no-till production system. Four row spacing (25, 30, 35, and 40 cm) and five rates of N fertilizer were investigated for 3 yr. Plant density was not affected by N rate and there was no N rate by row spacing interaction. There was a 10% decrease in plant population going from 25 to 40 cm with some years showing no differences. Some differences on the origin and frequency of tillers were observed due to spacing. Grain yield was similar among 25, 30, and 35 cm row spacing with a 13% yield decrease at 40 cm. A row spacing by N rate interaction for grain yield was observed. Grain quality was not affected by spacing other than for a small increase in thin seed and seed weight at wider spacing. Grain N and P concentrations were not affected by row spacing. The results support the feasibility of wide row spacing up to 35 cm combined with placing all fertilizer requirements in a side-banded position.

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