Special Issue "Management of Crops Fertigation"

A special issue of Agronomy (ISSN 2073-4395). This special issue belongs to the section "Soil and Plant Nutrition".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (10 March 2021).

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. María Teresa Lao Arenas
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Agronomy, Universidad de Almería (UAL), 04120 La Cañada, Almería, Spain
Dr. Pedro Garcia-Caparros
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Agronomy, Universidad de Almería (UAL), 04120 La Cañada, Almería, Spain
Interests: horticulture; nutrient management; fertigation management; abiotic stress tolerance; environmental impact assessment; soil science; wastewater; plant nutrition; crop physiology; fertilizers; nitrogen; light management in horticulture

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Fertigation is a technique that involves the application of soluble fertilizers in irrigation water. Fertilizers are normally applied by localized irrigation to offer a precise application of nutrients according to the nutritional requirements of the crop, aiming to increase yield. Fertigation is used both in soil cultivation and hydroponic systems and in conventional and organic systems. Within this framework, different aspects have been extensively studied, especially those related to the morphological, physiological, and productive responses to plant nutrition and the use of dynamic diagnostic tools such as sap analysis, suction probes, etc. The application forms of macro and micronutrients are of special interest in use efficiency (UE) studies related to the application of fertilizers (NUE, PUE, and KUE). Finally, the influence of fertigation on the polluting capacity in these productive systems and the possible methods of mitigating the effects are other aspects to consider.

This Special Issue aims to collect research papers and reviews focusing on the fertigation of horticultural crops: fruits, vegetables, and ornamentals. Therefore, research articles, reviews, short notes, and opinion articles related to inorganic and organic fertilizers used in fertigation; application and management of the nutrient solution; fertilizer use efficiency; diagnosis methods for adequate fertigation management; analytical, physiological, biochemical, and molecular biology of nutritional effects; and systems to palliate pollution  are welcome in this Special Issue. 

Dr. María Teresa Lao Arenas
Prof. Dr. Juan A. Fernández
Dr. Pedro Garcia-Caparros
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • fertilizers
  • ornamental plants
  • vegetables
  • fruits
  • aromatic plants
  • leachates
  • nutrient efficiencies
  • nutrient solutions

Published Papers (16 papers)

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Research

Article
Water and Nutrient Balance in an Ornamental Cascade Cropping System
Agronomy 2021, 11(6), 1251; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11061251 - 21 Jun 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 409
Abstract
Seedlings of Chrysalidocarpus lutescens, Dracaena deremensis and Dracaena marginata were grown in plastic containers filled with sphagnum peat-moss to assess the effects of three different water systems on plant growth, water saving and nutrient removal during the experimental period. The experiment lasted [...] Read more.
Seedlings of Chrysalidocarpus lutescens, Dracaena deremensis and Dracaena marginata were grown in plastic containers filled with sphagnum peat-moss to assess the effects of three different water systems on plant growth, water saving and nutrient removal during the experimental period. The experiment lasted for 8 weeks and consisted of three water systems. These consisted of an open draining system fertigated with a standard nutrient solution (system T0) and two closed systems: sequential reuse of the leachate (system T1) and sequential reuse of the leachate with the addition of H2O2 (system T2). Over the course of the experiment, samples of water and supplies generated in each water treatment were collected weekly, and from these data water volume and nutrient loads were calculated. The addition of H2O2 to the leachate resulted in an enhancement in plant dry weight in Dracaena deremensis and Dracaena marginata. Regarding anion loads (Cl, NO3, H2PO4, SO42−) in these water systems, there was a removal rate of 42%, 28%, 27% and 28%, respectively, in the closed systems compared to the open system. For the cation loads (Na+, K+, Ca2+ and Mg2+) in these water systems, there was a removal rate from 28% to 29%, respectively, in the closed systems compared to the open system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Management of Crops Fertigation)
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Article
Spatial Distribution and Mobility of Nutrients on Sand Mulching Soil for Fertigated Green Bean Crops under Greenhouse Conditions in Southern Spain: (I) Macronutrients
Agronomy 2021, 11(5), 842; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11050842 - 25 Apr 2021
Viewed by 454
Abstract
Information about the nutrients distribution in sand-mulched soils is rather scarce; therefore, the aim of this experiment was to determine the spatial distribution and mobility of macronutrients in the wet bulb zone in two sand-mulched soils (a technique where manure and sand are [...] Read more.
Information about the nutrients distribution in sand-mulched soils is rather scarce; therefore, the aim of this experiment was to determine the spatial distribution and mobility of macronutrients in the wet bulb zone in two sand-mulched soils (a technique where manure and sand are layered over existing soil) for fertigated green bean with a drip irrigation distribution system under greenhouse conditions. The experimental design was multifactorial (4): soil type (S1 (1.0% organic matter (OM)) and S2 (2.5% OM)), time of sampling (before planting and after crop harvest) and spatial distribution: distance (0.1, 0.2, and 0.3 m) from the emitter and soil depth (0.1–0.2, 0.2–0.3 and 0.3–0.4 m) with three blocks and one replication per block. The chemical parameters (pH, electrical conductivity (EC), and macronutrients concentration) were analyzed in each soil sample. The testing crop was green bean (Phaseolous vulgaris L. c.v. Mantra RZ), lasting 90 days. The results obtained showed the highest value of EC and NO3-N, K, and Ca concentration in the sand layer in both soils. At all soil profile depths, nutrient concentrations of NH4+-N and soil EC were lower in the high OM soil. Comparing the soil profile at the beginning and at the end of the experiment, there was a significant decrease in NO3-N, P and Ca concentration and a significant increase in EC value and Mg concentration at the end of the crop. In distance, EC and K showed the highest concentration at 0.30 m. In depth, there was a decline in EC value and NH4+-N, P, K, Ca and Mg concentration. The comparison between the sand layer and the soil profile in both soils reported a similar trend in pH, EC, NO3-N, P and Mg concentration. Considering the mobility of macronutrients in a sandy mulched soil, it would be recommendable to develop a sustainable and dynamic fertigation management, adjusting nutrient inputs over time. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Management of Crops Fertigation)
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Article
DRIS Norms and Sufficiency Ranges for Pepper Grown under Greenhouses Conditions in the Southeast of Spain
Agronomy 2021, 11(5), 837; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11050837 - 24 Apr 2021
Viewed by 537
Abstract
The aim of this study was to compile DRIS (Diagnosis and Recommendation Integrated System) norms and sufficiency ranges for pepper grown in greenhouses and the determination of the variation in DRIS norms and sufficiency ranges during the different phenological stages of the crop. [...] Read more.
The aim of this study was to compile DRIS (Diagnosis and Recommendation Integrated System) norms and sufficiency ranges for pepper grown in greenhouses and the determination of the variation in DRIS norms and sufficiency ranges during the different phenological stages of the crop. The DRIS norms and sufficiency ranges were constituted by 367 leaf samples of Capsicum annuum L. which were collected in different phenological stages of the crop (flowering (FL), fruiting (FT), fruit development (FD), and harvesting (HV)). Two sufficiency ranges were developed; one including all leaf samples and the other considering the leaf samples by phenological stages ((FL) (44), (FT) (96), (FD) (100), and (HV) (127)). Furthermore, 10 DRIS norms and CV were calculated from N, P, K, Ca, and Mg. Two ratios of them were calculated in FL (N/P and N/K), two in FD (N/P and Ca/N) and one in HV (N/P) showing low CV, meaning, according to DRIS norms, the essential role of these nutrients in the crop nutrition. Moreover, the sufficiency ranges computed by all database were: N (34–56), P (1.9–4.3), K (30–51), Ca (12–33), and Mg (4.0–15) (mg g−1 DW), respectively. The data obtained in this experiment highlighted the importance of the sensitivity (low CV) of nutrient in the phenological stages such as happened with N. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Management of Crops Fertigation)
Article
Use of a Portable Rapid Analysis System to Measure Nitrate Concentration of Nutrient and Soil Solution, and Plant Sap in Greenhouse Vegetable Production
Agronomy 2021, 11(5), 819; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11050819 - 22 Apr 2021
Viewed by 557
Abstract
A rapid analysis ion-selective electrode (ISE) system for measurement of [NO3] in nutrient solution (NS), soil solution (SS) and petiole sap (PS) was evaluated. For each material, there were 797–2010 samples from 5 to 6 different crops, and from 2 [...] Read more.
A rapid analysis ion-selective electrode (ISE) system for measurement of [NO3] in nutrient solution (NS), soil solution (SS) and petiole sap (PS) was evaluated. For each material, there were 797–2010 samples from 5 to 6 different crops, and from 2 to 4 different species. Accuracy was evaluated by linear regression (LR) with laboratory analysis (automated colorimetry, Cd reduction), and by relative error (RE), the average percentage deviation from laboratory analysis. For NS, the LR was y = 0.982x + 0.76, R² = 0.962 (n = 2010), for combined data from 5 crops (3 pepper, 2 cucumber). For SS, the LR was y = 0.975x + 1.13, R² = 0.965 (n = 797), for combined data from 5 crops (3 pepper, 2 cucumber). For undiluted PS, the LR relationship was y = 0.742x + 168.02, R² = 0.892 (n = 1425), for combined data from 6 crops (3 pepper, 2 cucumber, 1 melon). The underestimation was most pronounced at [NO3] of >1500 mg NO3–N L−1. For diluted petiole sap (dilution by 10 for pepper and melon, 5 for other species), the LR relationship was y = 1.010x + 99.26, R² = 0.927 (n = 1182), for combined data from 6 crops (2 pepper, 2 cucumber, 1 melon, 1 tomato). RE values for all measurements in composite datasets were 14%, 22%, 24% and 25% for NS, SS, undiluted PS and diluted PS respectively, and they were lower in concentrations most likely to be measured in practical on-farm work. The ISE system measured [NO3] in NS, SS and diluted PS with sufficient accuracy to effectively guide on-farm decision making. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Management of Crops Fertigation)
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Article
Substandard and Semi-Dwarfing Citrus Rootstocks for More Intensive, Higher-Density, and Sustainable Plantation Systems
Agronomy 2021, 11(4), 660; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11040660 - 30 Mar 2021
Viewed by 504
Abstract
An increasing number of intensive, dense, and sustainable citrus plantations have fostered a growing interest in addressing the future challenges of citrus crops: An increase in the world’s population, climate change, and globalization. Nutrient efficiency and the absence of vigorous citrus rootstocks are [...] Read more.
An increasing number of intensive, dense, and sustainable citrus plantations have fostered a growing interest in addressing the future challenges of citrus crops: An increase in the world’s population, climate change, and globalization. Nutrient efficiency and the absence of vigorous citrus rootstocks are required for the success of these plantation systems. The agronomic performances of the ‘Lane Late’ orange cultivar on three substandard or semi-dwarfing citrus rootstocks (Forner-Alcaide no.5 (FA5), Forner-Alcaide no.13 (FA13), and Forner-Alcaide no.41 (FA41)) were evaluated in Spain in comparison with more traditional Mediterranean citrus rootstocks (Carrizo citrange (CA), Citrus macrophylla (MP), and ‘Cleopatra’ mandarin (CL)) under a poor mineral fertilization program over six growing seasons. FA13 and FA41 induced the smallest ‘Lane Late’ trees. Although the rootstock did not induce a significant effect on the ‘Lane Late’ yield efficiency (kg m−3), the highest values were recorded for ‘Lane Late’ on MP, CL and FA13. In this sense, FA13 showed a high productive potential (kg ha−1), given the possibility of narrowing the tree spacing (smaller tree size). Regarding the use of soil nutrients, FA13 was the most efficient citrus rootstock. Thus, FA13 stands out as the most suitable citrus rootstock for more intensive and sustainable plantation systems of the ‘Lane Late’ orange under Mediterranean conditions similar to those of this study. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Management of Crops Fertigation)
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Article
Salinity Effect on Plant Physiological and Nutritional Parameters of New Huanglongbing Disease-Tolerant Citrus Rootstocks
Agronomy 2021, 11(4), 653; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11040653 - 29 Mar 2021
Viewed by 530
Abstract
Salinity is a major agriculture problem for citrus in the Mediterranean basin, which is a major global producer region. Citrus crops are also threatened by emerging diseases such as Huanglongbing (HLB). The use of different rootstocks increases the variability of citrus plant material [...] Read more.
Salinity is a major agriculture problem for citrus in the Mediterranean basin, which is a major global producer region. Citrus crops are also threatened by emerging diseases such as Huanglongbing (HLB). The use of different rootstocks increases the variability of citrus plant material in orchards, thus preventing extensive damage caused by abiotic and/or biotic diseases. In this work, we have evaluated the salinity response of five citrus rootstocks (US942, US897, X639, Forner Alcaide No. 5 and Carrizo citrange) some of which have known tolerance to HLB, under Mediterranean conditions. Four treatments with different salt concentrations (0, 25, 50 and 75 mM of NaCl) were applied by watering the plants three times per week for eleven weeks. Chlorophyll index (SPAD), growth and plant symptom parameters were recorded on a biweekly basis. At the end of the trial, roots, stem and leaves biomass and plant mineral content were obtained. The increasing concentration of NaCl resulted in visible leave damage symptoms for all citrus rootstocks assayed, hindering plant growth in all citrus rootstocks assayed, except for X639. The highest concentration of toxic ions in leaves was detected in Carrizo citrange and US897 for Cl, while the lowest concentration of Na+ was obtained in X639. These results provide growers with information about the sensitivity to salinity of different citrus rootstocks. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Management of Crops Fertigation)
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Article
Effect of Ozonated Fertigation in Pepper Cultivation under Greenhouse Conditions
Agronomy 2021, 11(3), 544; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11030544 - 13 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 416
Abstract
Ozone has a high oxidizing power avoiding the presence of residues, so it is a good candidate for use in organic farming. However, its application in fertigation has been little studied. Two experiments were conducted simultaneously to check the aims of this work. [...] Read more.
Ozone has a high oxidizing power avoiding the presence of residues, so it is a good candidate for use in organic farming. However, its application in fertigation has been little studied. Two experiments were conducted simultaneously to check the aims of this work. The aim of the first experiment was to study pepper response under the nutrient solution supply and the application of O3 and its interactions, and the aim of the second experiment was to determine the optimal dosage of O3 to be supplied, from the point of view of plant development and nutritional and physiological status in both experiments. We conclude that O3 supply via fertigation increased pepper biomass production. According to the results obtained, we recommend that the optimal dosage of O3 in pepper plants be from 0.18 to 0.36 mg L−1 due to its higher associated biomass production. Under these dosages, pepper plants showed a higher leaf area and higher photosynthetic pigment concentration. Similarly, under these dosages, N, P, and K plant uptake were higher, allowing a higher synthesis of bioassimilates. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Management of Crops Fertigation)
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Article
Fertigation Strategies to Alleviate Fertilizer Contamination Generated by Tomato Crops under Plastic Greenhouses
Agronomy 2021, 11(3), 444; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11030444 - 27 Feb 2021
Viewed by 552
Abstract
The rapid development of greenhouse horticulture has brought about a dramatic increase in the nitrate pollution of aquifers. The optimization of nitrogen application is an important tool to minimize nitrogen losses. The objective of this research was to assess the effect of different [...] Read more.
The rapid development of greenhouse horticulture has brought about a dramatic increase in the nitrate pollution of aquifers. The optimization of nitrogen application is an important tool to minimize nitrogen losses. The objective of this research was to assess the effect of different fertigation strategies, based on the reduction of the nitrogen applied and the use of a percentage of NH4+ as a nitrogen source, on the decrease in the environmental impact caused by the traditional system, as well as to evaluate if this is compatible with a high fruit yield (considering quantity and quality). Lycopersicum esculentum Mill cv. Forteza plants were grown in a polyethylene greenhouse. Tomato yield and quality were evaluated, along with leachates, which were collected by means of rigid plastic lysimeters. The proposed strategies did not reduce fruit yield. However, the reduction in the nitrate applied caused firmness and °Brix decrease, together with a diminution in titratable acidity until 124 days after transplanting. Nevertheless, these effects were not observed with the replacement of some of the NO3 by NH4+. The reduction in fertilizer inputs significantly improved water and nutrient (N, P and K) use efficiency. The treatment with NH4+ improved K use efficiency, compared to the conventional treatment, but P decreased. The highest NO3 and K leaching was detected in the traditional treatment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Management of Crops Fertigation)
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Article
Phosphorus and Carbohydrate Metabolism in Green Bean Plants Subjected to Increasing Phosphorus Concentration in the Nutrient Solution
Agronomy 2021, 11(2), 245; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11020245 - 28 Jan 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 593
Abstract
Phosphorus (P) is considered an elementary mineral nutrient for plants. Nevertheless, excessive or deficit supply to the crop may cause negative changes at the physiological level. Plants were cultivated in pots in a growth chamber under increasing P concentration (P1 (0.5 mmol/L [...] Read more.
Phosphorus (P) is considered an elementary mineral nutrient for plants. Nevertheless, excessive or deficit supply to the crop may cause negative changes at the physiological level. Plants were cultivated in pots in a growth chamber under increasing P concentration (P1 (0.5 mmol/L (control treatment)), P2 (1 mmol/L); P3 (2 mmol/L); P4 (4 mmol/L); P5 (6 mmol/L), and P6 (8 mmol/L)) in the nutrient solution for 40 days. At the end of the experimental period, biomass, carbohydrates concentration, and enzymatic activities related to the synthesis and degradation of sucrose as well as the different fractions of P in different organs of the plant were assessed. The results obtained in this experiment reveal a decrease in biomass under increasing P supply. Fructose, glucose, sucrose, and starch concentrations were higher in the shoots compared to the roots. There were different trends in the roots and shoots in enzymatic activities related to sucrose. The increase in P dose increased the concentration of the different forms assessed for P in all the organs studied. Seed phytate concentration surpassed the threshold established by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) for green bean plants grown under P4, P5, and P6 treatments. Considering the results obtained, we suggest fertigation with a concentration of 2 mmol/L to obtain a higher productivity without excess of phytate in seeds. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Management of Crops Fertigation)
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Article
Comparative Behavior of Dracaena marginata Plants Integrated into a Cascade Cropping System with the Addition of Hydrogen Peroxide
Agronomy 2021, 11(2), 218; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11020218 - 24 Jan 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 686
Abstract
The reuse of crop drainage into other crops, in the form of a cascade cropping system, is a feasible environmental solution where high inputs of water and fertilizer are used for crop growth and lower efficiency rates, associated with a high discharge of [...] Read more.
The reuse of crop drainage into other crops, in the form of a cascade cropping system, is a feasible environmental solution where high inputs of water and fertilizer are used for crop growth and lower efficiency rates, associated with a high discharge of water and fertilizers into the environment, are present. Dracaena marginata plants were cultured in containers with sphagnum peat moss and were subjected to three different fertigation treatments for eight weeks: Dm0 (standard nutrient solution or control treatment), Dm1 (raw leachates), and Dm2 (raw leachates with additional H2O2), where the leachates were collected from a Chrysalidocarpus lutescens-Dracaena deremensis cascade cropping system. At the end of the harvesting, growth parameters, pigment concentration, leaf and root proline, total soluble sugar concentrations, and water and nutrient use efficiencies were assessed for each fertigation treatment. Plant height, root, stem, and total dry weight increased under fertigation with leachates with H2O2. The fertigation with leachates with or without H2O2 increased the red index value. There were no clear trends between the fertigation treatments with regards to pigment concentrations and biochemical parameters (proline and total soluble sugar concentrations). The addition of H2O2 to the leachate increased N concentration in the organs assessed, as well as the water and nutrient use efficiencies. There were no variations in H2PO4, SO42−, Na+, and Mg2+ concentration in the chemical composition of the substrate between fertigation treatments. The positive results reported in this experiment suggest the potential growth of Dracaena marginata with leachate and hydrogen peroxide in a cascade cropping system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Management of Crops Fertigation)
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Article
Effects of Fertigation with Untreated and Treated Leachates from Municipal Solid Waste on the Microelement Status and Biometric Parameters of Viola × wittrockiana
Agronomy 2021, 11(1), 186; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11010186 - 19 Jan 2021
Viewed by 652
Abstract
Landfill leachate can release pollutants into the environment. Nevertheless, it can be treated using a phytodepuration system via constructed wetlands to reduce contaminants. Moreover, this leachate can also increase the availability of macro and micronutrients in soil and water. In this trial, the [...] Read more.
Landfill leachate can release pollutants into the environment. Nevertheless, it can be treated using a phytodepuration system via constructed wetlands to reduce contaminants. Moreover, this leachate can also increase the availability of macro and micronutrients in soil and water. In this trial, the reuse of untreated and treated wastewater from municipal solid waste (MSW) for fertigation was assessed. Plantlets of Viola × wittrockiana (pansy) were grown in a greenhouse and five fertigation treatments were applied: W9.0 (pure wastewater, EC 9.0 dS m−1), W4.5 (diluted wastewater, EC 4.5 dS m−1), DW4.5 (depurated wastewater, EC 4.5 dS m−1), PW4.5 (phytodepurated wastewater, EC 4.5 dS m−1), and T (tap water, control, EC 1.5 dS m−1). The treatment with untreated wastewater had a negative effect on plant dry weight, leaf size, specific leaf area, water content, and the number of closed and open flowers, due to the high concentration of SO42− in the fertigation water. It also reduced the content of Cu, Mn, Fe, and Zn with respect to the control, because of the dry biomass diminution. Conversely, fertigation with phytodepurated wastewater enhanced root and shoot dry weight, water content, and the number of closed and open flowers. Cu and Mn contents in flowers surpassed the content detected in plants fertigated with untreated leachates. These findings demonstrate that phytodepurated wastewater obtained from MSW can be employed for the fertigation of this species. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Management of Crops Fertigation)
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Article
Effects of Leachate Fertigation and the Addition of Hydrogen Peroxide on Growth and Nutrient Balance in Dracaena deremensis Potted Plants
Agronomy 2021, 11(1), 127; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11010127 - 11 Jan 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 530
Abstract
The reuse of drainages for cultivating more salt tolerant crops can be a useful tool especially in arid regions, where there are severe problems for crops water management. Dracaena deremensis L. plants were cultured in pots with sphagnum peat-moss and were subjected to [...] Read more.
The reuse of drainages for cultivating more salt tolerant crops can be a useful tool especially in arid regions, where there are severe problems for crops water management. Dracaena deremensis L. plants were cultured in pots with sphagnum peat-moss and were subjected to three fertigation treatments for 8 weeks: control treatment or standard nutrient solution (D0), raw leachates from Chrysalidocarpus lutescens H. Wendl plants (DL) and the same leachate blending with H2O2 (1.2 M) at 1% (v/v) (DL + H2O2). After harvesting, ornamental and biomass parameters, leaf and root proline and total soluble sugar concentration and nutrient balance were assessed in each fertigation treatment. Plant height, leaf and total dry weight had the highest values in plants fertigated with leachates with H2O2, whereas root length, leaf number, RGB values and pigment concentration declined significantly in plants fertigated with leachates from C. lutescens with or without H2O2. The fertigation with leachates, regardless of the presence or absence of H2O2 increased root and leaf proline concentration. Nevertheless, root and leaf total soluble sugar concentration did not show a clear trend under the treatments assessed. Regarding nutrient balance, the addition of H2O2 in the leachate resulted in an increase in plant nutrient uptake and efficiency compared to the control treatment. The fertigation with leachates with or without H2O2 increased nitrogen and potassium leached per plant compared to plants fertigated with the standard nutrient solution. The reuse of drainages is a viable option to produce ornamental plants reducing the problematic associated with the water consumption and the release of nutrients into the environment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Management of Crops Fertigation)
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Article
Soil Monitoring Methods to Assess Immediately Available Soil N for Fertigated Sweet Pepper
Agronomy 2020, 10(12), 2000; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy10122000 - 19 Dec 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 674
Abstract
Excessive N application occurs in greenhouse vegetable production. Monitoring methods of immediately available soil N are required. [NO3] in soil solution, sampled with ceramic cup samplers, and [NO3] in the 1:2 soil to water (v/ [...] Read more.
Excessive N application occurs in greenhouse vegetable production. Monitoring methods of immediately available soil N are required. [NO3] in soil solution, sampled with ceramic cup samplers, and [NO3] in the 1:2 soil to water (v/v) extract were evaluated. Five increasing [N], from very N deficient (N1) to very N excessive (N5) were applied throughout three fertigated pepper crops by combined fertigation/drip irrigation. The crops were grown in soil in a greenhouse. Soil solution [NO3] was measured every 1–2 weeks, and extract [NO3] every 4 weeks. Generally, for treatments N1 and N2, both soil solution and extract [NO3] were continually close to zero, and increased with applied [N] for treatments N3–5. The relationships of both methods to the nitrogen nutrition index (NNI), an indicator of crop N status, were assessed. Segmented linear analysis gave R2 values of 0.68–0.70 for combined data from entire crops, for both methods. NNI was strongly related to increasing [NO3] up to 3.1 and 0.9 mmol L−1 in soil solution and extracts, respectively. Thereafter, NNI was constant at 1.04–1.05, with increasing [NO3]. Suggested sufficiency ranges were derived. Soil solution [NO3] is effective to monitor immediately available soil N for sweet pepper crops in SE Spain. The extract method is promising. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Management of Crops Fertigation)
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Article
Nutrient Extraction in Pansy Fertigated with Pure, Diluted, Depurated and Phytodepurated Leachates from Municipal Solid Waste
Agronomy 2020, 10(12), 1911; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy10121911 - 03 Dec 2020
Viewed by 592
Abstract
The disposal of municipal solid waste (MSW) in landfills might result in serious environmental pollution. The goal of the present assay was to assess if MSW wastewater (pure or treated) can be used as a potential source for fertilizers, studying its effects on [...] Read more.
The disposal of municipal solid waste (MSW) in landfills might result in serious environmental pollution. The goal of the present assay was to assess if MSW wastewater (pure or treated) can be used as a potential source for fertilizers, studying its effects on plant biometric parameters as well as on anion concentrations and anion partitioning of the bedding plant Viola × wittrockiana Gams. (pansy), to detect possible harmful impacts on plants. The treatments tested were: W9.0 (pure wastewater, EC 9.0 dS m−1), W4.5 (diluted wastewater, EC 4.5 dS m−1), DW4.5 (depurated wastewater, EC 4.5 dS m−1), PW4.5 (phytodepurated wastewater, EC 4.5 dS m−1), and T (tap water, the control, EC 1.5 dS m−1). The treatment with pure wastewater negatively affected plant fresh weight, water content (on a fresh weight basis), leaf area, plant height and width, and the number of leaves and flowers due to an accumulation of SO42− in plant tissues. Phytodepurated wastewater improved plant fresh weight, water content, plant height and width, the number of leaves and flowers, and reduced the leaf area because this treatment decreased SO42− concentrations in wastewater by half. Pansy plants also showed high levels of nutrients (N, P, and Mg) when compared with fertigation with pure and diluted landfill leachate. These results show that phytodepurated wastewater from MSW can be used for the fertigation of pansy plants. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Management of Crops Fertigation)
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Article
Critical Leaf Magnesium Concentrations for Adequate Photosynthate Production of Soilless Cultured Cherry Tomato—Interaction with Potassium
Agronomy 2020, 10(12), 1863; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy10121863 - 26 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 517
Abstract
Magnesium (Mg) is essential to many plant physiological and biochemical processes; however, understanding how Mg nutrition quantitatively affects the production, partitioning, and utilization of photoassimilates is still lacking, especially in soilless culture systems. We focused on the roles of Mg in yield formation [...] Read more.
Magnesium (Mg) is essential to many plant physiological and biochemical processes; however, understanding how Mg nutrition quantitatively affects the production, partitioning, and utilization of photoassimilates is still lacking, especially in soilless culture systems. We focused on the roles of Mg in yield formation and interactions with potassium (K) nutrition of cherry tomato. Cherry tomato yield, photosynthetic parameters, dry matter weight, and K, Mg, and calcium (Ca) uptake were investigated in two soilless experiments with seven Mg levels and five K levels. The results showed that low (<1 mM) and high (>4 mM) Mg supply limited cherry tomato yield by decreasing dry matter accumulation by 22.6–78.1% and harvest index by 13.9–40.7%. The critical leaf Mg concentrations required for adequate photosynthate production in the first and second harvest periods were 4.67 and 5.52 g·kg−1, respectively. However, over-supply of Mg reduced leaf K and Ca concentrations and limited plant uptake of K and Ca. Moreover, adjusting K concentrations in solution could influence plant Mg functions in photosynthesis and, therefore, cherry tomato growth. Overall, balanced Mg and K application increased Mg, K, and Ca uptake, as well as Mg concentrations in leaves, which could maintain a sustainable photosynthetic rate and plant dry matter formation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Management of Crops Fertigation)
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Article
Nitrogen Effects on Yield, Quality and Physiological Characteristics of Giant Rice
Agronomy 2020, 10(11), 1816; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy10111816 - 19 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 737
Abstract
In China, the quantity of nitrogen fertilizer applied is large, but as a consequence of a high level of loss, its utilization rate is low. Compared to common rice, the new giant rice has interesting characteristics, namely high biological yield and good efficient [...] Read more.
In China, the quantity of nitrogen fertilizer applied is large, but as a consequence of a high level of loss, its utilization rate is low. Compared to common rice, the new giant rice has interesting characteristics, namely high biological yield and good efficient use of fertilizer. However, it becomes urgent to further consider the appropriate rate of nitrogen fertilizer to be applied. The giant rice varieties Feng5 and Feng6 were set up in a pot experiment and a field experiment under five doses of nitrogen fertilizers, namely, 0 kg·ha−1 (CK), 75 kg·ha−1 (T1), 150 kg·ha−1 (T2), 225 kg·ha−1 (T3) and 300 kg·ha−1 (T4). Parameters such as leaf area index (LAI), lodging index (LI), nitrogen utilization rate, photosynthesis rate and grain yield were measured. The results showed that with the increase of nitrogen dose in a certain range, LAI, plant height, the number of tillers, net photosynthetic rate (NPn), the transpiration rate (Tr), and the grain yield increased while the lodging index (LI), the nitrogen agronomic utilization rate (AE) and nitrogen partial productivity (PFPN) decreased. Additionally, with the increase of nitrogen application, the grain yield index (HI) and nitrogen contribution rate (FCRN) of rice presented a parabolic trend. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Management of Crops Fertigation)
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