Long-term effects of nitrogen and potassium fertilization on perennial ryegrass turf

J. S. Ebdon, M. DaCosta, J. Spargo, W. M. Dest

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1 Scopus citations


Research on the effects of potassium (K) fertilization on turfgrass growth and its relationship to tissue K and soil K have been inconsistent due to the many factors affecting tissue K such as nitrogen (N) fertilization. This 5-yr study was initiated in 2004 to better understand N (as urea) and K (as K2SO4) effects on soil and plant response of perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L. 'Brightstar'). A field study was conducted to evaluate five rate levels of N (49, 147, 245, 343, or 441 kg ha-1 yr-1) with three rate levels of K (49, 245, or 441 kg ha-1 yr-1). Clipping yield (CY), leaf tissue K, soil pH, rooting (in 2004 and 2005 only), and soil K were assessed in spring of each year. Leaf K and soil K increased linearly with K applied, whereas leaf K and CY regression slopes with soil K increased with greater N applied. Leaf K and CY increased linearly with N, whereas rooting, soil pH, and soil K decreased linearly with increased N. Rooting was inversely related to CY. Luxury consumption of K was observed in the latter years of the test (2006) at N rates of 245 kg N ha-1 yr-1 and lower. The strength of the regression (r2) and covariation between CY and leaf K increased with N rate and decreased with year of the test. There were no observed changes in shoot and root growth in response to K fertilization even at low soil test K levels (50 mg kg-1).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1750-1761
Number of pages12
JournalCrop Science
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 1 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Agronomy and Crop Science


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