Potato cultivation is quite demanding in inorganic nutrients and adequate fertilization is a key factor for maximizing yield and producing tubers of high quality. In the present study, a field experiment was carried out to evaluate the effect of various forms of fertilization on crop performance and the nutritional value and chemical composition of two potato varieties (cv. Spunta and cv. Kennebec). For this purpose, five different fertilizer treatments were applied namely: control (C), standard fertilizer (T1), standard fertilizer + zeolite (T2), manure (T3) and slow release nitrogen fertilizer (T4). According to the results, it was observed that slow release treatment (T4) achieved the highest yield for both varieties, while the control treatment presented significantly lower yield compared to the studied fertilization regimes. The dry matter of leaves and shoots was higher in T1 treatment for cv. Kennebec and in T2 and T4 treatments for cv. Spunta, whereas the control treatment presented the highest dry matter content in tubers for cv. Kennebec and T2 and T3 treatments for cv. Spunta. A significant effect of the fertilization regime was also observed on the nutritional value of tubers and more specifically the protein, ash and fat content was increased by treatments T1 and T4, while carbohydrate content was also increased by T3 and T4 treatments for both varieties. Similarly, the total sugars, organic acids, β-carotene and lycopene content was increased in T3 treatment for the Spunta variety, while the antioxidant capacity showed a varied response depending on the fertilizer regime and the tested variety. In conclusion, the fertilization regime has a significant effect not only on the tuber yield but also on the quality of the final product and should be considered as an effective tool to increase the added value of potato crop.
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