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Effects of Control Release Fertilizers on Nutrient Leaching, Palm Growth and Production Cost

Author

Listed:
  • Pushpa Soti

    () (Department of Biology, University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, Edinburg, TX 78539, USA)

  • Angie Fleurissaint

    () (Agroecology Program, Department of Earth and Environment, Florida International University, Miami, FL 33199, USA)

  • Stewart Reed

    () (United States Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Miami, FL 33158, USA)

  • Krish Jayachandran

    () (Agroecology Program, Department of Earth and Environment, Florida International University, Miami, FL 33199, USA)

Abstract

Objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of different controlled release fertilizer technologies on nutrient leaching and plant growth parameters of two palm species, Chinese Fan ( Livistona chinensis ) and Queen ( Syagrus romanzoffiana ). We compared Nutri-Pak (12-4-12 controlled release packet) and Harrell’s (12-4-12 controlled release polymer coated urea) against Atlantic (8-4-12 controlled release polymer coated urea, coated sulfate of potash), the most commonly used palm fertilizer in South Florida. Plants were grown in 25 cm (11 L) pots under 70% shade, watered weekly, with pest and weed control done as required. Plant growth parameters: number of leaves, leaf length and width, and basal diameter, were measured every two months. Leachate was collected weekly after irrigation and a two-month composite sample was analyzed for nutrient concentrations. There was no difference in the growth parameters among the three fertilizers for Chinese Fan plants. However for Queen, Atlantic and Harrell’s had significantly thicker basal diameter than Nutri-Pak. Significant difference in the concentration of nutrients in the leachate was observed among the fertilizer types. Throughout the study period, Nutri-Pak had a lower concentration of nutrients in the leachate than Atlantic and Harrell’s. Our research indicates that Nutri-Pak control release fertilizer is comparable to other commercial fertilizers in Chinese Fan growth, but the larger Queen palms likely require an additional packet. Nutri-Pak fertilizer resulted in less nutrient leaching and could be a better environmental choice.

Suggested Citation

  • Pushpa Soti & Angie Fleurissaint & Stewart Reed & Krish Jayachandran, 2015. "Effects of Control Release Fertilizers on Nutrient Leaching, Palm Growth and Production Cost," Agriculture, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 5(4), pages 1-11, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:gam:jagris:v:5:y:2015:i:4:p:1135-1145:d:59053
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. World Bank & Food and Agriculture Organization & International Fund for Agricultural Development, 2009. "Gender in Agriculture Sourcebook
      [Agricultura y desarrollo rural : manual sobre género en agricultura]
      ," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 6603.
    2. Unknown, 2009. "2009 Annual Agricultural Outlook," Staff Paper Series 47453, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    slow release fertilizers; palm growth; nutrient leaching; horticulture;

    JEL classification:

    • Q1 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture
    • Q10 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - General
    • Q11 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Aggregate Supply and Demand Analysis; Prices
    • Q12 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Micro Analysis of Farm Firms, Farm Households, and Farm Input Markets
    • Q13 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Agricultural Markets and Marketing; Cooperatives; Agribusiness
    • Q14 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Agricultural Finance
    • Q15 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Land Ownership and Tenure; Land Reform; Land Use; Irrigation; Agriculture and Environment
    • Q16 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - R&D; Agricultural Technology; Biofuels; Agricultural Extension Services
    • Q17 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Agriculture in International Trade
    • Q18 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Agricultural Policy; Food Policy

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