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Group Title: Agronomy research report - University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences ; AY 85-09
Title: Growth and chemical composition of bahiagrass as influenced by nitrogen rate, source, and application method
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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00056078/00001
 Material Information
Title: Growth and chemical composition of bahiagrass as influenced by nitrogen rate, source, and application method
Alternate Title: Growth and chemical composition of bahia grass as influenced by nitrogen rate, source and application method
Physical Description: 7 leaves : ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Baldwin, John Allen, 1947-
Gallaher, Raymond N.
University of Florida -- Agronomy Dept
Publisher: Department of Agronomy, IFAS, University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: 1985?
 Subjects
Subject: Bahia grass -- Field experiments -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Nitrogen fertilizers   ( lcsh )
Genre: bibliography   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
 Notes
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references (leaf 7).
General Note: Agronomy research report - University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences ; AY 85-09
Statement of Responsibility: by John A. Baldwin and Raymond N. Gallaher.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00056078
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 62473550

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HISTORIC NOTE


The publications in this collection do
not reflect current scientific knowledge
or recommendations. These texts
represent the historic publishing
record of the Institute for Food and
Agricultural Sciences and should be
used only to trace the historic work of
the Institute and its staff. Current IFAS
research may be found on the
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(EDIS)

site maintained by the Florida
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Copyright 2005, Board of Trustees, University
of Florida










1 AGRONOMY RESEARCH REPORT AY-85-09



Growth and Chemical Composition of Bahiagrass
as Influenced by Nitrogen Rate, Source, And
Application Method.

BY
,HUME LIBRARY
J hn A. Baldwin and Raymond N. Gallaher
A JUN 1i 1 9^5 aduate Student and Professor of Agronomy
I Jr spectively, Department of Agronomy, IFAS,
U diversity of Florida, Gainesville, Florida
I.F.A.S.- Univ. of Floridf 611

ABSTRACT

Nitrogen is the largest and most expensive fertilizer component
used in growing bahiagrass (Paspalum notatum Flugge). Anhydrous ammonia
is one of the least expensive sources of available N. Research was
conducted to determine the effect of anhydrous ammonia versus ammonium
nitrate as sources of N for bahiagrass fertilization in Florida. Two
locations in 1983 and one location in 1984 were utilized. Five rates of
N (0, 56, 112, 168, and 224 kg N/ha) were split plot treatments
randomized within each of the whole plot sources of N and were
replicated four times. Anhydrous ammonia was injected 15 cm into the
soil behind coulters. Ammonium nitrate was broadcast by hand. No
differences in dry matter yield were found between sources of N except
the last fall harvest in 1983, where yield was 22% greater for anhydrous
ammonia and at the first harvest during 1984 where a 21% increase was
also found for anhydrous ammonia. The difference in price between
anhydrous ammonia and ammonium nitrate would range from approximately
$15.00/ha at the 112 Kg N/ha rate to $53.00/ha at the 224 Kg N/ha rate.
Total bahiagrass dry matter yield for the season in 1983 and 1984
responded to 156 kg N/ha at all locations. However, economic response
occurred at the 56 Kg N/ha rate when DM yield was averaged over all
locations. Both sources of N cost about $35/ha at this rate.

INTRODUCTION

There are millions of acres of improved bahiagrass (Paspalum
notatum L. Flugge) pasture in the southeastern United States. This
pasture grass is easily maintained and provides beef cattle farmers with
a low to medium quality forage during the late spring, summer, and early
fall. Productivity and quality of bahiagrass can be improved by proper
application of N fertilizer (1,2,6,7,11). However, with the low beef
prices and the high cost of N fertilizer much of this pasture is never
fertilized adequately for good forage quality and productivity.
Nitrogen is the largest and most expensive fertilizer component used in
* growing bahiagrass. Anhydrous ammonia is one of the least expensive
sources of available N for fertilization of grass crops. Research in the
1950's (5,9) indicated that losses of up to 40% of applied N could occur
due to volatilization of ammonia. This loss was dependent upon the










cation exchange capacity of the soil, soil temperature, moisture, pH of
the soil and spacing of injectors. Since the 1950's new and improved
equipment is in use that may make the utilization of anhydrous ammonia
more economical than other sources. Also, there is now generally a 240%
price difference per Kg of N between anhydrous ammonia (82%N) and
ammonium nitrate (34%N). Many studies have been conducted concerning
the use of various N sources for fertilization of bahiagrass
(2,6,7,8,9). However, very limited information is available on the
response of bahiagrass to this fertilizer material. The objective of
this study was to determine the effect of anhydrous ammonia versus
ammonium nitrate as sources of N for bahiagrass fertilization.

MATERIALS AND METHODS

Two separate experiments at two locations were conducted during
1983 ari one during 1984. Five rates of N (0, 56, 112, 168, and 224 kg
N/ha) were split plot treatments randomized within each of the whole
plot sources of N and were replicated four times. Treatments were
applied during 1983 on June 8th at location one and on June llth at
location two. Location three received all treatments on May 29th, 1984.
All locations had been in bahiagrass sod for 15 years. Location
one was a Kershaw fine sand (thermic, uncoated, typic Quartzipsamment)
an excessively drained sand. Location two and three were on a Candler
series (hyperthermic, uncoated, typic Quartzipsamment) also an
excessively drained rapidly permeable soil.
The plots were 3 x 10 m. Anhydrous Ammonia was injected 15 cm into
the bahiagrass sod utilizing a DMI "Sod Booster" applicator developed by
DMI Inc., Goodfield Illinois. The applicator is a pull type unit with 9
spring loaded shanks on 35.5 cm spacings with adjustable knives and
packer wheels behind each knife. A Continental A 6503 regulator was
utilized to regulate the anhydrous ammonia flow. Ammonium nitrate was
broadcast by hand to all plots receiving this treatment.
All plots at all locations were fertilized with a broadcast
application of 80 kg K/ha, 25 kg S/ha, and 12 kg Mg/ha prior to applying
N treatments. Sources of K, S and Mg were K SO :MgSO (K-Mag) and KC1
(Muriate of Potash).
All plots were harvested with a rotary type mower with a grass
catching attachment. Clipping height was 2.5 cm. Harvest size was 1 x
7 m with all plots being harvested at 3 week intervals until October
each year when cool temperatures and dry weather severely limited
growth. Samples were dried in a forced air oven at 70 C, then ground in
a Wiley mill through a 2 mm screen. Forage N was determined by
micro-Kjeldhal methods. Forage In-Vitro organic matter digestion
(IVOMD) was determined by an adaptation of the "Tilley and Terry"
procedure.
Average yields over all locations were. calculated. These average
yields were used to calculate cost/Mg of forage produced at each rate of
N, cost/Mg of forage produced by each 56 Kg increment of N, and forage
production efficiency of applioed N (Kg of dry matter produced/Kg N
applied).
The cost of anhydrous ammonia was calculated at $16.00/ha for
application plus 26 cents/Kg material applied (82%) which computes to a
cost of 32 cents/kg of applied N plus $16.00/ha at each rate of N. The
cost of ammonium nitrate was calculated at 21.5 cents/Kg of material
(34%) or 63 cents/Kg of applied N.











RESULTS AND DISCUSSION


No differences in dry matter yield were found between sources of N
except the last harvest at location one during 1983 and the first
harvest at location three during 1984, where yield was 21% greater for
anhydrous ammonia (Tables 1,2). Organic matter provides exchange sites
to aid in holding ammonium ions in anhydrous ammonia to keep N from
leaching. Ammonium nitrate could be more susceptible to leaching under
these conditions than the anhydrous ammonia source of N. Also, a lack
of sufficient moisture to move ammonium nitrate into the soil would also
give an advantage to anhydrous ammonia during early growth following
application.
Dry matter yield responded to the 112 or 168 kg N/ha rate depending
on location and harvest date (Tables 3,4,5). Nitrogen concentration
increased with increasing rate of N at all locations to the 112 kg N/ha
rate (Tables 6,7). Nitrogen concentration due to source was different
only at the 56 kg N/ha rate at location two and the 112 kg N/ha rate at
location three (Tables 6,7). Bahiagrass N content decreased with
succeeding harvest dates but increased by rate of N applied at each
harvest date (Tables 8,9,10). Nitrogen source affected In Vitro
Organic Matter Digestibility (IVOMD) on the last three harvest dates at
location one and at the 2nd and 3rd harvests at location two. The
ammonium nitrate showed a 14 to 22% increase in IVOMD over the anhydrous
ammonia at locations one and two (Table 11). Bahiagrass IVOMD responded
similarly to N rate and also responded to the 168 and 224 kg N/ha rate
to N source at locations one and two, respectively (Tables 12, 13, 14).
A possibility for this greater digestibility from ammonium nitrate could
be due to destruction of bahia stolons during the injection process of
NH4+ where more soluble carbohydrate would be utilized to re-build cells
and structure in the stoloniferous root systems (10).
Further studies need to be conducted to determine effects of
anhydrous ammonia on IVOMD. Rainfall and temperature apparently
influenced all parameters measured over all locations and harvest dates
which has been reported in other N rate studies( 1,4,6,10).
Considering that overall dry matter yield only responded to 56 Kg
N/ha (Table 15) it was determined that both sources of N cost about
$35.00/ha at this rate (Table 16). The ammonium nitrate/ha became more
expensive than the anhydrous ammonia as rate of N increased. The price
difference ranged from approximately $18.00/ha at 112 Kg N/ha to
$53.00/ha at 224 Kg N/ha (Table 16). The efficiency of N use decreased
as the rate of applied N increased. Averages of 40.3, 24.4, 18.5, and
15.8 Kg dry forage were produced per Kg of applied N for succeeding
increments between 0 and 56, 56 and 112, 112 and 168, and 168 and 224
Kg/ha of applied N (Table 17). The cost of producing forage above the
56 Kg N/ha rate increased dramatically due to the decreased amount of
forage produced per 56 Kg increment of N (Table 17). Soil type,
rainfall amount and distribution, ambient and soil temperature, cost/Kg
N applied, and clipping height could all affect yield and/or cost/Kg of
forage produced.







TABLE 1 BAHIACRASS DRY HATTER YIELD AS AFFECTED
BY SOURCE OF NITROGEN AT LOCATION 1

NITROGEN SOURCE

DATE NI(14 N14+ NO3

-----------Kg/ha ----------
1 1128 1146 NS
2 1198 1192 NS
3 2117 2177 NS
4 854 823 NS
5 383 303 *
*LSD.05-68
NS NOT SIGNIFICANT AT .05 LEVEL OF
PROBABILITY.


TABLE 2 BAHIA(:RASS DRY MATTER YIELD AS AFFECTED
BY SOURCE OF NITROGEN AT LOCATION 3

NITROGEN SOURCE

DATE N 4+ NH 4 NO


----------Kg/l.-----------

1 814 645 *
2 1018 971 NS
3 890 847 NS
4 717 731 NS
5 383 356 NS
*I.SD .05 123


TABLE 3 BAIIIAGRASS DRY MATTER YIEID AS AFFECTED
BY RATE OF NITROGEN AT LOCATION 1
HARVEST DATE

NITROGEN
RATE I 2 3 4 5
Kg/ha -- ------K/ha------------------


0
56
112
168
224
LSD.05


814
2060
2267
2254
2241
530


TABLE 4 BAIIIAGRASS DRY MATTER YIELD AS AFFECTED
BY RATE OF NITROGEN AT LOCATION 2

IIARVEST DATE

NITROGEN
RATE 1 2 3 4

Kg/ha ---------- Kgi/ha -------------


721
1380
1190
1367
1411


613
1045
1183
1460
1406


671
1659
2194
2750
3191


LSD.05 329 210 452 176


TABLE 5 BAIIIACRASS DRY MATTER YI:I.)D AS AFFECTED)
BY RATE OF NITROGEN AT LOCATION 3

IIARVI:ST DATE


NITROGEN
RATE 1 2 3 4 5

Kg/ha ------------- Kg/ha---------------------


509
886
952
1150
1474


420 390
746 600
839 649
1035 879
1302 1103


LSD.05 230 269 298 215


TABLE 6 PERCENT NITROGEN AS AFFECTED'BY
NITROGEN RATE AND SOURCE

RATE N SOURCE FOR SOURCE FOR
LOCATION 1 LOCATION 2
Nil + NII NO NIl NH NO

Kg/ha ---------------Z-----------------


1.46
1.43
1.67
1.78
1.81


1.27 1.02 1.16
1.45 1.13 1.35
1.54 1.35 1.44
1.70 1.51 1.46
1.93 1.51 1.63


LSD.05 .22 RATE. NS SOURCE LOCATION 1
LSD.05 .23 RATE. .15 SOURCE LOCATION 2







TABLE 7 PERCENT NITROGEN AS AFFECTED BY
NITROGEN RATE AND SOURCE IWEN APPLIED
TO BAHIACRASS AT LOCATION 3

N RATE NITROGEN SOURCE
NII + NH NO
.4 4
Kg/ha Z
0 1.40 1.40
56 1.39 1.59
112 1.52 1.71
168 1.72 1.82
224 1.82 1.89

LSD.05 .18. RATE .11 SOURCE


TABLE 9 NITROGEN CONTENT OF BAHIACRASS AS
INFLUENCED BY NITROGEN RATE AT
LOCATION 2
HARVEST DATES


N RATE 1 2 3 4
KG/ha-----------------Kg/ha---------------

0 8.6 15.4 14.4 3.6
56 22.2 17.2 17.5 5.9
112 29.2 22.2 30.7 8.9
168 25.8 22.6 29.3 12.5
224 29.6 24.1 42.1 15.0
LSD.05 4.33 4.33 4.33 4.33


TABLE 11 IN-VITRO ORGANIC MATTER DIGESTIBILITY
AS AFFECTED BY N SOURCE AT 2 LOCATIONS
SOURCE FOR SOURCE FOR
LOCATION I LOCATION 2

DATE NHI + Nil NO LSD.05 NH + NNO3 LSD.05

-- 2 ---- ---- ----
1 49.4 48.3 NS 35.7 33.9 NS
2 41.7 42.3 NS 29.6 34.5 2.53
3 32.6 40.3 4.07 26.5 31.4 1.95
4 32.5 38 2.92 30.6 36.2 NS
5 31.1 39.7 2.98


TABLE 8 NITROCCEN CONTENT OF BAHIlACRASS AS
INFI.UENCrD HY NITROGEN RATE AT
LOCATION 1

IHARVEST DATES

N RATE 1 2 3 4 5

Kg/ha _____----- Kg/ha ______________
0 6.4 6.1 9.6 6.0 3.9
56 22.9 17.4 22.8 9.8 5.0
112 29.9 22.8 29.1 13.5 5.7
168 31.9 25.1 35.1 15.8 7.4
224 26.1 27.8 40.7 19.3 7.3

I.SD.05 10.2 6.4 4.7 2.5 2.0


TABLE 10 NITROGEN CONTENT OF BAIIIACRASS AS
INFLUENCED BY NITROGEN RATE AT
LOCATION 3

HARVEST DATES

N RATE 1 2 3 4 5
Kg/ha ___________ Kg/hna
0 6.3 6.9 5.5 5.9 4.1
56 12.7 15.4 9.5 8.4 4.8
112 12.5 18.3 13.2 9.4 4.6
168 13.5 22.8 18.3 14.5 6.9
224 15.5 31.5 25.0 18.1 8.9
LSD.05 4.2 4.9 5.5 3.3 1.9












TABLE 12 IN-VITRO ORGANIC MATTER DIGESTIBILITY
AS AFFECTED BY RATE AND SOURCE OF N

RATE N SOURCE FOR SOURCE FOR
LOCATION I LOCATION 2
N14 + Nil NO3 Nl4+ Nl NO3

Kg/ha ------------ --------------
0 34.5 37.9 26.8 30.2
56 38.4 41.8 28.5 32.2
112 37.0 40.5 32.5 32.5
168 38.1 42.2 31.3 33.6
224 39.2 46.0 33.8 42.1
LSD.O5 = 2.79 RATE, 3.66 SOURCE LOCATION 1
LSD.05 = 4.73 RATE, 2.87 SOURCE LOCATION 2


-














TABLE 13 IN-VITRO ORGANIC MATTER DIGESTIBILITY
AS AFFECTED BY N RATE AT LOCATION 1

HARVEST DATE

N
RATE 1 2 3 4 5

Kg/ha ----------------%---------------------


TABLE 14 IN-VITRO ORGANIC MATTER DIGESTIBILITY
AS AFFECTED BY N RATE AT LOCATION 2

HARVEST DATE

N
RATE 1 2 3 4
Hg/ha --------------- Z ------..


42.8
49.2
46.1
50.9
55.0


39.4
41.4
43.2
42.5
43.5


35.6
39.4
33.5
35.4
38.4


LSD.05 4.93 4.03 NS


32.9
35.9
36.4
33.6
37.4


30.3
30.3
34.8
38.5
39.0


NS 2.98


TABLE 15 AVERAGE BAHIAGRASS DRY MATTER YIELD
AS AFFECTED BY RATE OF NITROGEN AT
3 LOCATIONS


NITROGEN LOCATION
RATE 1 2 3 AVG.
Kg/ha-----------------kg/ha------------------


2228
5359
6248
5592
5490


2420
4815
5231
6403
6913


1811
3048
3190
3801
4730


TABLE 16 EFFICIENCY OF FORAGE DRY MATTER
PRODUCED FROM ANHYDROUS AMMONIA
OR AMMONIUM NITRATE AT FOUR RATES OF N

N RATE COST COST
FORAGE*
+ +
NH4 NH4NO DM NH4 NH4NO3

Kg/ha -----$/ha--- Kg/ha ---- $/Mg ------
0 0 0 0 0 0
56 34.13 35.39 2254 15.14 15.70
112 52.11 70.88 2737 19.04 25.90
168 70.14 106.33 3112 22.54 34.17
224 88.17 141.77 3558 24.78 39.84

Forage DM/rate of N minus 0 rate of N
in TABLE 15 using average values


2153
4407
4890
5265
5711


TABLE 17 EFFICIENCY AND COST OF PENSACOLA
BAHIAGRASS FORAGE PRODUCED FROM
ANHYDROUS AMMONIA OR AMMONIUM NITRATE
AT FOUR RATES OF N

FORAGE DM FORAGE DM
N RATE PER 56 Kg N PER Kg*N COST/
INCREMENT APPLIED INCREMENT N
NH + NH4NO3

Kg/ha Kg/ha Kg ----$/Mg-----
0 -
56 2254 40.3 15.14 15.70
112 483 24.4 37.27 73.39
168 375 18.5 48.00 94.53
224 446 15.8 40.36 79.48


27.8
32.7
36.8
33.0
43.8
.05 5.77


29.6
30.4
33.4
33.2
33.7
NS


28.9
28.3
27.4
S28.4
31.8
NS


27.8
29.4
32.6
34.8
42.6
'NS









REFERENCES


1. Beat, E. R.,J.L. Engel and J.D. Powell. 1977. Yield, leaf growth, and
tillering in bahiagrass by N rate and season. Agron. J. 69:308-311.

2. -----, R.A. McCreery, and J.D. Powell. 1960. Response of Pensacola
bahiagrass to N fertilization. Agron. J. 52:435-455.

3. -----, J.D. Powell, R.H. Brown, and W.J. Ethredge. 1963. Effect of N rate
and clipping frequency on yield of Pensacola bahiagrass. Agron. J. 53:3-4.

4. ----, K.H. Tan, R.A. McCreery, and John D. Powell. 1980. Yield and N
content of closely clipped bahiagrass as affected by N treatments. Agron. J.
72:56-60.

5. Blue, W.G., and C.F. Eno. 1954. Distrubution and retention of Anhydrus
Ammonia in sandy soils. Soil Sci. Soc. Am. Proc. 18:420-424.

6. ---, 1966. The effect of nitrogen sources, rates, and application
frequencies on Pensacola bahiagrass forage yields and nitrogen utilization.
Soil and Crop Sci. Soc. Florida Proc. 26:105-109.

7. ----, 1972. Nitrogen fertilization in relation to seasonal pensacola
bahiagrass forage nitrogen and production distribution. Soil and Crop Sci.
Soc. Florida Proc. 31:75-77.

8. ----, 1974. Efficiency of five nitrogen sources for Pensacola bahiagrass
on Leon fine sand as affected by lime treatments. Soil and Crop Sci. Soc.
Florida Proc. 33:171-180

9. ----, 1984. Anhydrous ammonia as a nitrogen source for Florida
Agricultural crops. Notes in Soil Sci. No. 14. Univ. of Fla, Soil Sci. Dept.

10. Sampaio, E.V.S.B., and E.R. Beaty. 1976. Morphology and growth of
bahiagrass at three rates of N. Agron J. 65:379-381.


11. Stanley,
percent cell
fertilization


R.L., E.R. Beaty, and J.D. Powell. 1977. Forage yield and
wall constituents of Pensacola bahiagrass as related to N
and clipping height. Agron. J. 69:501-504.


ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

The authors acknowledge the following individuals for their resources
and technical support of the research project. Peggy and Spencer Miller,
Bronson, Florida; Mr. Bobby Lott, Bronson, Florida; Mr. J.F. Copeland,
Alachua, Florida; Sonny Tompkins, Bill Carter, Betty Hurst, and Evelyn
Bluckhorn, Technical Assistants, IFAS, Gainesville, and Bronson, Florda.




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