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Fluid Journal : Fluid Journal 1993-1995
3 Fluid Journal Summer 1995 50 45 40 35 30 25 20 15 10 5 0NBN+B 0NBN+B Nutrients Bonifay Sand Greenville Sandy Loam Yield - bu/A Figure 2. Soybean yield response to spray treatments made during pod development (R4) at two sites, Gascho, University of Georgia, 1992. species will have higher than normal requirements, particularly those with high yield potential grown at high populations per acre. Plant analysis. This diagnostic tool can help predict boron needs when soil tests and deficiency symptoms are not conclusive. Scientists have determined plant tissue levels of boron that are optimum for most profitable production. The ideal system is to provide boron to keep crop tissue levels in the sufficiency range. Both "deficient" and "excess" concentrations should be avoided. Some crops are quite sensitive to excess boron, so care should be taken to avoid over- fertilizing. On the other hand, too little boron can result in low yield and poor quality production. Soil testing. A boron soil test is one of several important factors used to assess fertilization need. The soil test value receives much weight, but interpretation of boron testing is subject to soil, crop, and water management factors. Consult your local agricultural soil testing experts for interpretation. Geographic area. As with most other essential nutrients, boron requirements vary by geographic area. Factors such as crop, soil, temperature, and precipitation influence relative need. All of the above should be used in determining boron needs. They help take the guesswork out of formulating a sound boron fertilizer program for profitable crop production. Soybeans respond Studies conducted by Dr. Gary Gascho of the University of Georgia have shown the benefits of using boron on soybeans. They have also shown the effects soil variation can have. Positive yield response to applied boron was greater on deep sandy soils than on sandy loam underlain by a semi- permeable layer. Results in 1992, for example, showed significant yield responses on a Bonifay sand to N, and N plus B (Figure 2). Responses on the Greenville sandy loam were positive, but not statistically significant. Yield responses of greater than 5 bu/ A have generally been limited to irrigated, deep sandy soils. These soils have little anion exchange capacity, and N is leached rapidly. Therefore, it is not surprising that deficiencies of N and B are often found on such soils and that supplemental fertilization can result in yield increases. Sound agronomics An agronomically sound and environmentally safe boron fertilization program is one that is scientifically based and yet responsive to crop, climate, and farm management differences. Such a program provides crop boron needs in an efficient manner and considers not only the rate of boron needed but also the source, timing, and method of application. Scientifically based crop production systems are essential for providing a growing population with an abundance and variety of safe, reasonably priced, high-quality food and fiber.
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