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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: SYSTEMS AND TECHNOLOGIES FOR SUSTAINABLE SITE-SPECIFIC SOIL AND CROP MANAGEMENT

Location: Cropping Systems and Water Quality Research

Title: A Precision Nitrogen Management Approach to Minimize Impacts

Authors
item Scharf, Peter -
item Kitchen, Newell
item Bronson, Kevin -

Submitted to: ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: June 1, 2009
Publication Date: November 2, 2009
Citation: Scharf, P., Kitchen, N.R., Bronson, K. 2009. A Precision Nitrogen Management Approach to Minimize Impacts [abstract]. ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting Abstracts November 1-5, 2009, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Technical Abstract: Nitrogen fertilizer is a crucial input for crop production but contributes to agriculture’s environmental footprint via CO2 emissions, N2O emissions, and eutrophication of coastal waters. The low-cost way to minimize this impact is to eliminate over-application of N. This is more difficult than it sounds. Weather interacting with terrain has a huge influence on N loss, N mineralization, and crop yield potential (therefore N demand). Optimal nitrogen fertilizer rate varies widely from year to year, field to field, and place to place within a field. Precision N management technologies are the only way to address within-field variability, and some may help to address year-to-year or field-to-field variability as well. Examples of precision N management will be presented, including canopy sensors, remote sensing, N credit zones, soil productivity zones, and grid soil nitrate sampling. We will attempt to quantify the effect of these approaches on agriculture's footprint on the landscape.

Last Modified: 4/19/2014
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