International Journal of Agricultural Policy and Research Vol.1(4),pp.109-115,June 2013
© 2013 Journal Issues
Article ID JPR35, 07pages
Original Research Paper
Effects of nitrogen split-application on productivity, nitrogen use efficiency and economic benefits of maize production in Ethiopia
Accepted May 15, 2013
Tilahun Tadesse* Alemayehu Assefa Minale Liben and Zelalem Tadesse
Agronomist/physiologist Adet Research Center, P. O. Box 08, Bahir Dar, Ethiopia.
*Corresponding author Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The objectives of this study were to determine the optimum nitrogen fertilizer split application time and proportion for the intermediate and late maturing maize varieties. One intermediate (BH-540) and late (BH-660) maturing varieties and 10 N application times were evaluated in split-plot design with three replications at Adet Research station, in northwestern Ethiopia. Varieties were randomized in the main plots and time of fertilizer application in the sub-plots. The N application times were 1/2 at planting+ 1/2 at knee height, all at planting, 1/2 at planting + 1/2 at near tasseling, 1/3 at planting + 1/3 at k + 1/3 tasseling, 1/3 at planting + 2/3 at knee height, 1/3 at planting + 2/3 at tasseling, 1/4 at planting + 2/4 at knee height + 1/4 at tasseling, 1/4 at planting + 1/4 at knee height + 2/4 at tasseling, 1/4 at planting + 3/4 at knee height, and 1/4 at planting +3/4 at tasseling. A total of 128 kg N/ha was applied in all cases. In the intermediate maturing variety (BH-540), application of 1/3 N at planting and 2/3 at knee height significantly (p<0.05) out-yielded the other split-applications. The application method gave a yield advantage of 1005 kg/ha over the commonly practiced 1/2 at planting and 1/2 at knee height application. Concerning the late maturing variety (BH-660), application of 1/4 N at planting and 3/4 at knee height gave a yield advantage of 296 kg/ha over 1/2 at planting and 1/2 at knee height application. The best yielding split-applications and timings exhibited the highest agronomic Nutrient Use Efficiencies (NUE) for the respective varieties.
Key Words: Maize, nitrogen response, nutrient use efficiency.