Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/9/1997
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: The phosphorus content of drainage water of the Everglades Agricultural Area (EAA) of Florida must be reduced by at least 25% from a baseline mean calculated using 1978 through 1988 data. At least this amount of P reduction may be one of several steps to necessary to sustain much of the unique habitat of remaining natural regions of the Everglades. The objectives of this study were to evaluate variability in leaf tissue P concentration among elite sugarcane (interspecific hybrids of Saccharum spp.) clones and to recommend sampling strategies to detect differences among clones. Samples were collected from three fields four times per annual crop in the plant-cane and first-ratoon crops. Leaf P of sugarcane should be tested at several locations in at least two crop years, and at least once, but preferably twice per crop. It was estimated that clones differed by 5.9 kg per ha in P uptake. Genetic improvement of this trait could be feasible. If further studies show that differences in leaf P concentration can reliably predict differences in total P removal from a sugarcane field, then classification of cultivars for leaf P concentration could make available to EAA sugarcane farmers an additional best management practice (BMP) to reduce P content of their drainage waters.