Nitrogen Requirements For New Potato Varieties Under Furrow


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NITROGEN REQUIREMENTS FOR NEW POTATO VARIETIES UNDER FURROW IRRIGATION
Erik B. G. Feibert, Clinton C. Shock, and Lamont Saunders Malheur Experiment Station Oregon State University Ontario, Oregon
Summary
A trial was designed to test potato nitrogen requirements for potato varieties under furrow irrigation in a N deficient field. The highest potato yield (518 cwt/ac over all varieties tested) was obtained in 1995 by the use of only 84 lb N/ac soon after planting. Additional N produced no additional economic returns. Varieties did not differ significantly in their response to N fertilizer. The new potato variety A082611-7 had higher total US Number One and marketable tuber yield than Russet Burbank and Shepody in this trial.
Introduction
The development of new potato varieties has made it possible to achieve good tuber yield and quality with furrow irrigation. These new varieties might differ from each other in their nitrogen requirements. Previous studies under sprinkler irrigation showed that the optimum N rate was less than the rate recommended by either the Oregon or Idaho fertilizer guides (Feibert et al., 1995). This trial compared Russet Burbank, Shepody, Frontier Russet, Ranger Russet, and three experimental lines A082611-7 and COO83008-1 (both for processing), and NDTX 8-731-1R (a fresh market, red variety) as to their nitrogen requirements under furrow irrigation.
Procedures
The 1995 trial was conducted on an Owyhee silt loam previously planted to wheat at the Malheur Experiment Station. The field was bedded into 36-inch hills in the fall of 1994. A soil sample taken from the top foot on May 1, 1995 showed a pH of 7.8, 1.7 percent organic matter, 19 meq per 100 g of soil cation exchange capacity, 8 ppm nitrate-N, 4 ppm ammonium-N, 13 ppm phosphorus, 439 ppm potassium, 2350 ppm calcium, 383 ppm magnesium, 370 ppm sodium, 1.0 ppm zinc, 12.2 ppm iron, 8.8 ppm manganese, 1.0 ppm copper, 19 ppm sulfate-S and 0.7 ppm boron.
Two-ounce seed pieces were planted April 27 at 9-inch spacing. On May 19, Thimet 20G insecticide at 3 lbs ai/ac was shanked-in at the same time that urea for the nitrogen treatments was applied. The urea was applied before emergence to both sides of the hill (Figure 1). The shanks were adjusted to place the urea in bands
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located at the same depth as the seed piece and offset 9 inches from the hill center. The hills were remade with a Lilliston cultivator. Prowl at 1 lb ai/ac and Dual at 2 lbs ai/ac were broadcast on the entire soil surface on May 23 and incorporated with the Lilliston. A late blight and insect control program consisting of weekly aerial applications of fungicide and insecticide mixes was initiated on July 14 and continued through August 26.
The experimental design had four N treatments as main plots and the seven potato varieties as split-plots within the main plots (Table 3). The main plots were 9 rows wide and 50 feet long. The four nitrogen treatments were replicated six times.
Nitrogen fertilizer rates were 0, 84, 144, and 204 lb N/ac (Table 1). Pre-emergence urea was applied on May 19. The second nitrogen application consisted of urea applied to the furrow bottom immediately before an irrigation to simulate water-run nitrogen.

Table 1. Nitrogen rates applied to seven potato varieties. Malheur Experiment Station, Oregon State University, Ontario, Oregon, 1995.

Treatment
1 2 3 4

Spring nitrate plus ammonium
N 0-1 feet
36 36 36 36

Pre-emergence N Post-emergence

(May 19)

"water-run" N

(July 14)

lbs N/ac

0

0

60

24

100

44

140

64

Total nitrogen supply*
36 120 180 240

* Does not include mineralized nitrogen during the season.
Twenty four granular matrix sensors (GMS, Watermark Soil Moisture Sensors Model 200, Irrometer Co., Riverside, CA) were installed in the top foot of soil and six GMS were placed in the second foot of soil. The daily sensor readings were used to schedule irrigations. The GMS in the top foot of soil were offset 6 inches from the hill top and centered 8 inches below the hill surface. The second foot GMS were placed in the hill center and centered 20 inches below the hill surface. Half of the first foot sensors were located on the wheel traffic side of the potato hill and the other half were located on the non-wheel traffic side of the hill. Sensors were read five times per week from June 10 to September 4 at 8 AM. Irrigations were started when the average soil water potential in the first foot of soil dried to -50 kPa.
At each irrigation, every other furrow was irrigated, with the irrigated furrows alternating from irrigation to irrigation. Seventeen irrigations were applied from June 12 to
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September 1. Irrigation durations were 24 hours from June 12 through July 17 and 12 hours from July 17 through September 1.
Petiole samples were collected every two weeks from June 21 to August 16, and analyzed for nitrate.
Russet Burbank, Shepody, and Frontier Russet plants in each plot were sampled for petiole nitrate. Plant available-N contributed from organic matter mineralization was determined by the buried bag method (Westermann and Crothers, 1980).
Tubers from 40 feet in each plot were harvested on September 26 and evaluated for yield and grade. A subsample was stored and analyzed for tuber specific gravity and stem-end fry color in early November.
Results and Discussion
The soil remained generally wetter than -60 kPa until late in the season (Figure 2). We have shown that soil much drier than -60 kPa at the 8-inch depth can be associated with an increase in US Number Two tubers and other quality defects.
The maximum total potato yield, over all varieties, was 518 cwt/ac obtained at 84 lb N/ac (Table 3). This yield was achieved with substantially less N fertilizer than the university fertilizer guides would have recommended for this field (Table 2). The N in this trial was shanked in after planting, which would improve the use efficiency compared to pre-plant broadcast applications. When broadcast N applications are used, substantial amounts of N can be lost to leaching, lost to volatilization, or be located in tops of the potato hill that are inaccessible to the roots. The average total potato yield for Malheur County in 1995 was 405 cwt/ac, using substantially more N fertilizer than used in this trial (225 lb N/ac).
Total tuber yield, total US Number Ones, large US Number Ones and marketable tuber yield increased with 84 lb N/ac, over all varieties (Table 3). The proportion of large US Number One tubers increased with 84 lb N/ac (Table 4).
Varieties A082611-7 and COO83008-1 had among the highest marketable yield and A082611-7 had the highest total US Number One yield. Ranger Russet had the highest tuber specific gravity (Table 5). Shepody, A082611-7, and CO083008-1 had among the lightest tuber stem-end fry color.
Organic matter mineralization in the top foot of soil released 10 lbs N/ac between May 1 and May 18 and 46 lb N/ac between May 18 and July 5, based on analysis of the soil in the buried bags (Figure 3). The nitrogen in the buried bags represents residual soil available nitrogen plus nitrogen released from organic matter mineralization without the effects of crop uptake, leaching, and other losses.
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The positive response of potato yields to N fertilization in 1995 compared to 1994 was probably due to the lower pre-plant soil nitrate and ammonium N in 1995 (75 lb N/ac on May 1) compared to 1994 (108 lb N/ac on March 24). Nitrogen mineralization released about the same amount of N by June 30 both years (90 lb N/ac from March 24 to June 30 in 1994 and 98 lb N/ac from May 1 to July 5 in 1995). By July 5 the buried bags in the top two feet of soil contained amounts of nitrate and ammonium corresponding to 173 lb N/ac in 1995 compared to 198 lb N/ac on June 30 in 1994.
Only the 204 lb N/ac treatment for Russet Burbank and Shepody and the 144 lb N/ac and 204 lb N/ac treatments for Frontier Russet resulted in petiole nitrate in the sufficiency range (Jones and Painter, 1974); levels that proved to be unnecessary for maximum yields (Figures 4-6).
Conclusions
Sidedressed N fertilization beyond 84 lb N/ac did not increase potato yields in 1995, over all varieties. The 84 lb N/ac resulting in the maximum total yield of 518 cwt/ac is substantially less than the university fertilizer recommendations for this field.
Averaged over all N rates, the experimental processing varieties A082611-7 and C0083008-1, performed as well as, or better than Shepody and Ranger Russet in US Number One and marketable yield. Russet Burbank and Frontier Russet had among the darkest stem-end fry color and lowest tuber specific gravity.

Table 2. University N fertilizer recommendations compared to actual sidedressed N fertilizer needed to maximize furrow irrigated potato yield. Malheur Experiment Station, Ontario, Oregon, 1995.

Year

Soil nitrate & ammonium, 0-24 inches at planting

University recommendation

Oregon

Idaho

lb/ac

1994

108

80

110

1995

75

236*

220**

* 176+ 60 (20 lb N/ac per ton of wheat straw residue)

** 175+45 (15 lb N/ac per ton of wheat straw residue)

Lowest N rate tested achieving top yield
0 84

Literature cited
Anonymous. 1985. Fertilizer Guide: Irrigated Potatoes (Columbia Basin-Malheur County). FG 57. Oregon State University Extension Service.
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Feibert, E.B.G., C.C. Shock, and M. Saunders, 1995. Nitrogen fertilization for potato varieties grown under sprinkler irrigation, 1994 trial. Oregon State University Agricultural Experiment Station Special Report 947. Jones, J.P. and Painter, C.G., 1974. Tissue analysis: A guide to nitrogen fertilization of Idaho Russet Burbank Potatoes. University of Idaho, College of Agriculture, Cooperative Extension Service, Agricultural Experiment Station, Current information series # 240, June 1974. McDole, R.E., D.T. Westermann, G.D. Kleinschmidt, G.E. Kleinkopf, and J.C. Ojala. 1987. Idaho Fertilizer Guide: Potatoes. Current Information Series No. 261. University of Idaho, College of Agriculture. Westermann, D.T., and S.E. Crothers. 1980. Measuring soil nitrogen mineralization under field conditions. Agronomy Journal 72: 1009-1012.
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Table 3. Yield response of seven potato cultivars to four nitrogen fertilizer treatments. Malheur Experiment Station, Oregon State University, Ontario, Oregon, 1995.

Variety

Nitrogen fertilizer rate

US Number One

Potato yield by market grade

US Number Two

Marketable Undersize Total

4-6 oz 16-10 oz I >10 oz I total 4-6 oz 16-10 oz 1>10 oz I total

yield

lb N/ac

cwt/ac

R. Burbank

0 126.0 174.3 122.1 422.3 2.8 8.9 20.5 32.1 454.4 94.2 548.6

84 119.1 175.2 138.0 432.3 5.8 12.3 30.4 48.5 480.9 86.7 567.6

144 106.4 170.2 152.2 428.8 6.3 15.0 30.8 52.1 480.9 80.6 561.5

204 92.2 149.2 150.1 391.5 3.1 13.8 29.6 46.5 438.0 84.0 522.0

Average 110.9 167.2 140.6 418.7 4.5 12.5 27.8 44.8 463.5 86.4 549.9

Shepody

0

39.0 98.7 278.0 415.6 0.3 1.8 5.4 7.5 423.2 17.3 440.4

84 32.8 84.7 332.2 449.8 1.7 2.8 16.3 20.9 470.7 22.1 492.8

144 33.1 91.5 312.8 437.4 1.8 2.9 28.6 33.3 470.7 19.2 489.9

204 26.3 78.7 348.4 453.4 1.3 4.3 37.5 43.1 496.4 16.1 512.5

Average 32.8 88.4 317.9 439.0 1.3 3.0 21.9 26.2 465.3 18.7 483.9

F. Russet

0

90.0 176.7 168.5 435.2 1.2 3.3 16.8 21.3 456.5 56.6 513.0

84 76.9 137.5 223.3 437.7 2.0 2.1 18.7 22.7 460.5 63.1 523.6

144 72.8 137.5 191.0 401.3 2.0 5.5 24.1 31.6 432.8 52.5 485.3

204 71.2 115.2 199.2 385.6 2.7 7.2 23.3 33.1 418.7 59.5 478.2

Average 77.7 141.7 195.5 414.9 2.0 4.5 20.7 27.2 442.1 57.9 500.0

R. Russet

0

49.2 142.7 181.6 373.5 3.0 6.8 19.7 29.6 403.1 30.2 433.2

84 41.0 123.6 284.8 449.3 2.7 5.5 24.1 32.3 481.7 26.4 508.1

144 42.4 110.3 271.5 424.3 1.2 7.6 25.0 33.8 458.1 27.2 485.3

204 40.1 83.7 269.0 392.7 3.1 10.0 34.5 47.6 440.3 32.0 472.3

Average 43.1 115.1 251.7 409.9 2.5 7.5 25.8 35.8 445.8 29.0 474.7

AO 82611-7

0

81.4 191.2 166.1 438.8 1.0 3.6 12.7 17.3 456.1 49.0 505.1

84 61.5 158.5 240.1 460.2 1.6 6.1 20.3 28.0 488.2 38.5 526.7

144 63.2 147.8 266.2 477.1 1.4 6.4 23.7 31.5 508.6 43.6 552.2

204 59.7 145.2 29a0 504.0 2.3 5.8 19.3 27.5 531.4 43.3 574.8

Average 66.5 160.7 242.9 470.0 1.6 5.5 19.0 26.1 496.1 43.6 539.7

COO 83008-1

0

40.2 128.8 220.0 389.0 1.1 6.7 24.1 31.9 421.0 19.2 440.2

84 30.4 94.0 324.7 449.2 1.5 8.4 39.9 49.7 498.9 13.9 512.7

144 39.6 135.3 270.2 445.0 1.5 8.9 21.8 32.2 477.2 20.6 497.8

204 27.3 111.5 311.7 450.5 1.1 4.7 33.2 39.0 489.5 2t2 510.7

Average 34.4 117.4 281.6 433.4 1.3 7.2 29.7 38.2 471.6 18.7 490.4

NDTX 8-731-1R

0

59.1 144.8 198.0 401.9 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 401.9 42.4 444.3

84 68.4 146.2 240.2 454.8 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 454.8 45.4 500.2

144 68.9 145.6 205.2 419.6 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 419.6 40.4 460.1

204 59.2 142.0 197.6 398.8 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 398.8 42.3 441.1

Average 63.9 144.6 210.2 418.8 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 418.8 42.6 461.4

All varieties

0

69.3 151.0 190.6 410.9 1.3 4.4 14.2 20.0 430.9 44.1 475.0

84 61.5 131.4 254.8 447.6 2.2 5.3 21.4 28.9 476.5 42.3 518.8

144 60.9 134.0 238.4 433.4 2.0 6.6 22.0 30.6 464.0 40.6 504.6

204 53.7 117.9 253.6 425.2 1.9 6.5 25.3 33.8 459.0 42.6 501.7

LSD (0.05) Trt

6.5 9.3 23.7 21.5 ns ns 6.6 8.5 21.5

ns 20.8

LSD (0.05) Variety

8.9 15.2 29.4 28.3 1.2 3.0 8.0 9.8 29.2

6.1 29.2

LSD (0.05) Trt X Var

ns ns ns ns ns ns ns ns ns

ns

ns

80

Table 4. Tuber market grade response of seven potato cultivars to four nitrogen fertilizer treatments. Malheur Experiment Station, Oregon State University, Ontario, Oregon, 1995.

Variety R. Burbank
Shepody
F. Russet
R. Russet
AO 82611-7
COO 83008-1
NDTX 8-731-1R
All varieties LSD (0.05) Trt LSD (0.05) Variety LSD (0.05) Trt X Var.

Nitrogen fertilizer rate
lb N/ac 0 84 144 204
Average 0 84 144 204
Average 0 84 144 204
Average 0 84 144 204
Average 0 84 144 204
Average 0 84 144 204
Average 0
84
144 204 Average 0 84 144 204

Potato market grade distribution

US Number One

US Number Two

4-6 oz 16-10 oz 1>10 oz I total 4-6 oz 16-10 oz I >10 oz I total

%

22.8 31.5 22.8 77.1 0.5 1.6 3.8 5.9

21.0 30.8 24.3 76.1 1.0 2.2 5.4 8.6

19.3 30.4 26.5 76.2 1.2 2.6 5.4 9.2

17.5 28.3 29.5 75.3 0.6 2.6 5.6 8.8

20.2 30.2 25.7 76.2 0.8 2.3 5.1 8.1

9.0 22.8 62.6 94.4 0.1 0.4 1.2 1.6

6.9 17.3 67.3 91.4 0.3 0.6 3.2 4.0

6.8 18.8 63.7 89.3 0.4 0.6 5.8 6.7

5.1 15.4 68.3 88.9 0.2 0.8 6.9 8.0

6.9 18.6 65.5 91.0 0.3 0.6 4.3 5.1

17.3 34.3 33.0 84.6 0.2 0.6 3.4 4.2

14.9 26.3 42.3 83.5 0.4 0.4 3.5 4.3

15.0 28.4 39.1 82.5 0.4 1.2 5.0 6.6

15.0 23.9 41.6 80.5 0.6 1.5 4.9 6.9

15.6 28.3 39.0 82.8 0.4 0.9 4.2 5.5

11.4 33.3 41.6 86.3 0.7 1.5 4.4 6.7

8.0 24.4 56.0 88.4 0.5 1.1 4.8 6.4

8.9 22.7 55.8 87.3 0.2 1.5 5.2 7.0

8.6 17.8 56.9 83.4 0.6 2.1 7.0 9.7

9.2 24.5 52.6 86.3 0.5 1.6 5.4 7.5

16.3 37.9 32.6 86.8 0.2 0.7 2.5 3.4

11.7 30.1 45.4 87.2 0.3 1.2 4.0 5.4

11.4 26.9 48.2 86.5 0.2 1.1 4.3 5.6

10.6 25.7 51.3 87.5 0.4 1.0 3.3 4.7

12.5 30.1 44.4 87.0 0.3 1.0 3.5 4.8

9.2 28.9 50.1 88.2 0.2 1.6 5.5 7.3

6.1 18.5 62.7 87.4 0.3 1.6 8.0 9.9

8.0 27.2 54.2 89.3 0.3 1.8 4.4 6.5

5.4 22.1 60.6 88.1 0.2 0.9 6.6 7.7

7.2 24.2 56.9 88.3 0.3 1.5 6.1 7.9

13.2 33.3 43.9 90.4 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0

13.8 29.3 47.8 90.9 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0

15.0 31.9 44.3 91.1 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0

13.4 32.2 44.8 90.4 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0

13.9 31.7 45.2 90.7 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0

14.2 31.7 40.9 86.8 0.3 0.9 3.0 0.2

11.8 25.2 49.4 86.4 0.4 1.0 4.1 5.5

12.1 26.6 47.4 86.0 0.4 1.3 4.3 6.0

10.8 23.6 50.4 84.9 0.4 1.3 4.9 6.6

1.7 1.9 3.8 ns ns ns 1.3 1.6

1.7 2.9 4.6 2.2 0.2 0.6 5.6 1.9

ns 5.8 ns ns ns ns ns ns

Marketable
83.0 84.7 85.4 84.0 84.3 96.0 95.4 96.0 96.9 96.1 88.9 87.8 89.1 87.5 88.3 93.0 94.8 94.3 93.1 93.8 90.2 92.6 92.1 92.3 91.8 95.5 97.3 95.8 95.8 96.1 90.4 90.9 91.1 90.4 90.7 91.0 91.9 92.0 91.4 ns 1.2 ns

Undersize
17.0 15.3 14.6 16.0 15.7 4.0 4.6 4.0 3.1 3.9 11.1 12.2 10.9 12.5 11.7 7.0 5.2 5.7 6.9 6.2 9.8 7.4 7.9 7.7 8.2 4.5 2.7 4.2 4.2 3.9 9.6 9.1 8.9 9.6 9.3 9.0 8.1 8.0 8.6 ns 1.2 ns

81

Table 5. Tuber stem-end fry color and specific gravity response of six potato cultivars to four nitrogen fertilizer treatments. Malheur Experiment Station, Oregon State University, Ontario, Oregon, 1995.

Variety R. Burbank
Shepody
F. Russet
All varieties LSD (0.05) Trt LSD (0.05) Variety LSD (0.05) Trt X Var

Nitrogen fertilizer
rate lb N/ac
0 84 144 204 Average 0
84
144 204 Average
0 84 144 204 Average 0
84
144 204

Stem-end Specific fry color gravity

Variety

% reflectance
32.5 33.8 33.2 33.4 33.2 46.5 47.6 46.4 44.9 46.3 35.6 34.0 32.9 30.1 33.1 42.2 42.4 42.4 41.3 ns

1.094 1.092 1.088 1.087 1.090 1.094 1.093 1.087 1.089 1.091 1.097 1.088 1.088 1.083 1.089 1.106 1.094 1.092 1.090
ns

R. Russet AO 82611-7 COO 83008-1

19.7 0.016

ns

ns

Nitrogen fertilizer
rate lb N/ac
0 84 144 204 Average 0 84 144 204 Average 0 84 144 204 Average

Stem-end fry color
% reflectance
44.7 45.2 45.5 44.4 44.9 45.6 46.5 46.3 45.9 46.1 48.3 47.2 50.3 49.1 48.7

Specific gravity
1.159 1.102 1.100 1.098 1.115 1.095 1.094 1.093 1.094 1.094 1.097 1.095 1.096 1.092 1.095

82

Figure 1. Nitrogen fertilizer was shanked into the bed between the furrow and seed piece. Malheur Experiment Station, Oregon State University, Ontario, Oregon, 1995. Fertilizer placement
36 inches

Figure 2. Soil water potential over time for furrow-irrigated potatoes. Malheur Experiment Station, Oregon State University, Ontario, Oregon, 1995.

7.. I 0 r

I \,
-I

CO -10 I

0.

I

-V -20 T

I' ii
I'

A

I

i

Ca -30 -I-

i

C
a)

-40 r

II

..C.5 -50 O.
a- -60 CD

ZS -70

8-inch depth — — — • 20-inch depth

•n -80
O cn -90

-100 163

184

205

226

247

Day of year

Figure 3. Available soil N in the first and second foot of soil released through organic matter mineralization as estimated by the buried-bag method. Malheur Experiment Station, Oregon State University, Ontario, Oregon, 1995.
nitrate 1st ammonium 1st ---• nitrate 2nd ammonium 2nd

Sampling date

Figure 4. Russet Burbank petiole nitrate over time for furrow-irrigated potatoes receiving
different N treatments. Malheur Experiment Station, Oregon State University, Ontario, Oregon, 1995.

18

QD.

16

14

4:1)



-0 12

*a 2 10

8

204 lbs N/g 144 lbs N/g ---• 84 lbs N/ac 0 lbs N/ac

July 5

July 19

August 3

Sampling date

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Nitrogen Requirements For New Potato Varieties Under Furrow