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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Columbia, Missouri » Cropping Systems and Water Quality Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #362832

Research Project: Sustainable Intensification of Cropping Systems on Spatially Variable Landscapes and Soils

Location: Cropping Systems and Water Quality Research

Title: Corn nitrogen fertilizer recommendations: always a toolbox, or can we get to a tool?

item Kitchen, Newell
item RANSOM, C. - University Of Missouri
item BEAN, G. - University Of Missouri
item CAMBERATO, J. - Purdue University
item CARTER, P. - Dupont Pioneer Hi-Bred
item FERGUSON, R. - University Of Nebraska
item FERNANDEZ, F. - University Of Minnesota
item FRANZEN, D. - North Dakota State University
item LABOSKI, C.A. - University Of Wisconsin
item NAFZIGER, E. - University Of Illinois
item SAWYER, J. - Iowa State University

Submitted to: Soil Science Society of America Annual Meeting
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/15/2018
Publication Date: 1/6/2019
Citation: Kitchen, N.R., Ransom, C.J., Bean, G.M., Camberato, J.J., Carter, P.R., Ferguson, R.B., Fernandez, F.G., Franzen, D.W., Laboski, C.M., Nafziger, E.D., Sawyer, J.E. 2019. Corn nitrogen fertilizer recommendations: always a toolbox, or can we get to a tool? [abstract]. Soil Science Society of America Annual Meeting, January 6-9, 2019, San Diego, California. Available:

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Despite extensive effort devoted to developing tools for making corn nitrogen (N) fertilizer recommendations, no single tool has been adopted over large regions. Tools are largely localized. Yet, few investigations have been conducted to do a side-by side comparison of decision tools under a wide array of soils and climate conditions for a large region. Research was conducted over three growing seasons (2014-2016) for a total of 49 corn N rate response studies as part of public-industry partnership between eight land-grant universities within the US Corn Belt (Iowa State University, University of Illinois, Purdue University, University of Minnesota, University of Missouri/USDA-ARS, North Dakota State University, University of Nebraska, University of Wisconsin, and DuPont Pioneer). This investigation used standardized methods and measurements that included soil-profile sampling and characterization by pedogenic horizon, laboratory analysis of physical and chemical properties, apparent soil electrical conductivity survey, daily weather, plant N (VT and R6 developmental stage), mineral N at various times of the growing season, lab N mineralization tests, and V9 canopy sensing at the time of side-dress N fertilization. Yield and soil measurements provided both the information needed to generate N recommendations using various tools, but also for making modifications to tools. Examples of modifications include utilizing site-specific soil profile information (e.g., drainage class, profile texture) and early-season precipitation for side-dress applications, or combining tools. Results of tools were compared to the economic optimal N rate (EONR) and will be the basis of this presentation.