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The effect of parameter uncertainty on whole-field nitrogen recommendations from nitrogen-rich strips and ramped strips in winter wheat

  • Roberts, David C.
  • Brorsen, B. Wade
  • Solie, John B.
  • Raun, William R.

This paper estimates the relative profitability of using optical reflectance-based measures to predict crop needs for topdress nitrogen application to hard red winter wheat (Triticum aestivum). The data are from nitrogen yield response experiments where midseason optical reflectance data were recorded. Both nitrogen-rich strips and ramped strips are considered. Unlike past research, optimal nitrogen recommendations are calculated with and without accounting for parameter uncertainty. The expected profit-maximizing strategy is to follow the historical extension advice of applying 90 kg ha-1 preplant nitrogen using anhydrous ammonia. This strategy is more profitable than the best optical reflectance-based prediction system by $18.74 ha-1. When anhydrous ammonia is unavailable and preplant nitrogen must be applied as dry urea, the extension recommendation and the optical reflectance-based predictors are not significantly different. Ramped strips are no better than nitrogen-rich strips. Accounting for estimation uncertainty in the parameters increases expected profit by about $10 ha-1.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Agricultural Systems.

Volume (Year): 104 (2011)
Issue (Month): 4 (April)
Pages: 307-314

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Handle: RePEc:eee:agisys:v:104:y:2011:i:4:p:307-314
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/agsy

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  1. Moen, Thomas N. & Kaiser, Harry M. & Riha, Susan J., 1994. "Regional yield estimation using a crop simulation model: Concepts, methods, and validation," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 79-92.
  2. Chambers, Robert G. & Lichtenberg, Erik, 1994. "A Nonparametric Approach to the von Liebig-Paris Technology," Working Papers 197799, University of Maryland, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics.
  3. Gelson Tembo & B. Wade Brorsen & Francis M. Epplin & Em�lio Tost�o, 2008. "Crop Input Response Functions with Stochastic Plateaus," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 90(2), pages 424-434.
  4. Biermacher, Jon T. & Epplin, Francis M. & Brorsen, B. Wade & Solie, John B. & Raun, William R., 2006. "Maximum Value of a Precise Nitrogen Application System for Wheat," 2006 Annual Meeting, February 5-8, 2006, Orlando, Florida 35391, Southern Agricultural Economics Association.
  5. Babcock, Bruce A., 1992. "Effects of Uncertainty on Optimal Nitrogen Applications (The)," Staff General Research Papers 10588, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  6. Boyer, Christopher N. & Brorsen, B. Wade & Solie, John B. & Raun, William R., 2010. "Profitability of Conventional vs. Variable Rate Nitrogen Application in Wheat Production," 2010 Annual Meeting, February 6-9, 2010, Orlando, Florida 56405, Southern Agricultural Economics Association.
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