Project seeks to find optimum N rates for corn-soybean rotation

Linda Benedict  |  10/17/2016 6:43:28 PM

Dan Fromme, LSU AgCenter corn specialist, checks corn at plots in Avoyelles Parish. Photo by Bruce Schultz


Dan Fromme, LSU AgCenter corn specialist, is working on a project to determine the optimum rate of nitrogen fertilizer for corn grown in rotation with soybeans.

He said soybeans add nitrogen to the soil but it’s not clear how much of that nutrient is available the next year for corn. “Do we lose it to denitrification or leaching from heavy rains?”

The project, in its first year, is being conducted on corn crops in Concordia, Rapides, Avoyelles and Pointe Coupee parishes, in addition to a field at the Dean Lee Research and Extension Center near Alexandria. Fromme said north Louisiana was originally included in the project for 2016, but flooding eliminated those locations.

Soil samples were taken at each location before planting to determine the amount of nitrogen in the soil before fertilizer was applied.

Liquid nitrogen (32-0-0 with urea and ammonium nitrate) was knifed into the soil after planting corn at the rates of 150, 175, 200 and 225 pounds per acre.

After harvest, yield, test weight and moisture will be measured. Bruce Schultz

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