Submitted to: Journal of Sustainable Agriculture
Publication Type: Peer reviewed journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/28/2003
Publication Date: 8/20/2004
Citation: Glaz, B.S., Deren, C.W., Powell, G., Snyder, G.H., Perdomo, R., Ulloa, M.F. 2004. Leaf phosphorus of sugarcane genotypes selected for high yields in florida. Journal of Sustainable Agriculture 24(2):47-62. Interpretive Summary: Restoration of the Florida Everglades is a national priority. As part of this restoration process, there are strict legislative controls on the amount of phosphorus that can be discharged to the natural Everglades from Florida sugarcane farms. Best management practices (BMPs) to meet these requirements cost farmers $153 per ha to install and $9 per ha to maintain. This research classified the phosphorus in leaves of 24 important Florida sugarcane varieties. Several commercial varieties were identified with more leaf phosphorus than others. The next steps will be to assure that varieties with the highest phosphorus in their leaves actually removed the most phosphorus from the soil and that removing more phosphorus from the soil does not always mean that more phosphorus fertilizer will have to be added to the following crop. Positive answers to these concerns would mean that Florida sugarcane farmers could use varieties identified in this research as no-cost BMPs and remove about 3 kg phosphorus per hectare per year from the Everglades by doing so.
Technical Abstract: A regulatory program in the Everglades Agricultural Area (EAA) of Florida requires an annual reduction of at least 25% in total P load to protect habitat in the Everglades. The objective of this study was to characterize leaf P conc. at three P fertilizer rates for 24 sugarcane (interspecific hybrids of Saccharum spp.) genotypes previously selected for high yields in the EAA. Eight genotypes were planted at two locations, a second group of eight genotypes was planted at a third location, and a third group of eight genotypes was planted at a fourth location. Genotypes were identified with high and low leaf P conc., and this characteristic was consistent across P fertilizer rates, locations, crop cycles, and sampling dates. Widely used cultivars with high leaf P conc. were CP 80-1743, CP 80-1827, and CP 84-1198. It was estimated that these cultivars would remove from 2.9 to 3.8 kg ha-1 more P than other EAA cultivars. CP 90-1113 had a leaf P conc. substantially greater than all other genotypes. Widely used cultivars with low leaf P conc. were CP 72-2086, CP 78-1628, and CP 88-1762.