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Fertilizer additives within or around the gel for fluid drilled cabbage brassica oleracea cultivar derby day and lettuce lactuca sativa cultivar avondefiance



Fertilizer additives within or around the gel for fluid drilled cabbage brassica oleracea cultivar derby day and lettuce lactuca sativa cultivar avondefiance



Hortscience 17(5): 746-748



Three glasshouse experiments were conducted in which starter N, P and K fertilizers were incorporated either within or below gel used for fluid sowing pregerminated seed of 'Avondefiance' lettuce (L. sativa L.) and 'Derby Day' cabbage (B. oleracea L. Capitata group). Addition of nutrients to the gel at salt concentrations of 384-1893 mg-ion/l inhibited emergence of the pregerminated seeds. Additions to the gel at concentrations of 9-21 mg-ions/l were too low to affect the growth of the plants. Nutrient solutions applied to the base of the furrow immediately prior to fluid drilling the seeds allowed higher concentrations of salts to be used without reducing emergence. Solutions that contained factorial combinations of 0.84 g/l N, 1.86 g/l P, and 2.34 g/l K applied at the rate of 0.5 ml/cm of furrow increased lettuce dry matter production by up to 44% after 20 days growth, although there was no significant effect on the growth of cabbage. The increase in lettuce growth was mainly in response to P starter fertilizer but the largest response was achieved with the N + P + K starter treatment.

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