Optimization of plant nutrition is a very important part of primary production quality systems. Crop fertilization is the most important agrotechnical measure because it determines the amount and quality of the yield. Moreover, excess fertilization intensifies the eutrophication processes and the greenhouse effect. The study aimed to assess the suitability of slow-release fertilizers in cultivation of carrot subspecies Daucus carota
L. ssp. sativus
in the integrated production system. The objective was realized on the basis of a strict field experiment set up on a clay loam soil with low nutrient content. The dose of fertilizer was the experimental factor. The fertilizers were applied during the formation of the ridges. Traditional fertilizers (ammonium phosphate, potassium salt, ammonium nitrate, and a multi-component fertilizer Polifoska 6), as well as a multi-component fertilizer with slow release of nutrients, NPK Mg (18-12-24-4), were used. In individual variants of the experiment, different fertilization strategies were applied: integrated production fertilization, traditional fertilization, and fertilization based on the use of slow-release fertilizers. The control treatment comprised of unfertilized plants. The efficiency of nitrogen fertilization was evaluated based on agronomic efficiency, partial factor productivity, physiological efficiency, and removal efficiency. Fertilization strategy significantly impacted the quantity of obtained yield. In the control sample, prior to mineral fertilization, the crop yield was 33.53 Mg·ha−1
. The largest yield was 82.30 Mg·ha−1
.The largest yields were obtained from plants fertilized with a combination of slow-release fertilizers, with nitrogen introduced in the form of ammonium phosphate, and through conventional fertilization. The highest productivity and environmental efficiency were obtained in treatments with fertilization according to the principles of integrated production and with slow-release fertilizers. In terms of environmental efficiency, the best results were obtained through nitrogen fertilization using 400 kg of slow-release fertilizers. The use of slow-release fertilizers in carrot cultivation can significantly improve the efficiency of fertilization, both in terms of production and environmental protection.
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