Effect of Timing and Nitrogen Fertilizer Application on Winter Oilseed Rape (Brassica napus L.). I. Growth Dynamics and Seed Yield


Agricultural University, Poznań, Poland


The field experiments conducted on the grey-brown podzolic soil in the four growing seasons (1998–2001) at Krzeslice Farm, central-western Poland comprised seven fertilization variants: 80NF + 80CAN; 80CAN + 80CAN; 80AN + 80AN; 80NF + 50CAN + 30CN; 80CAN + 50CAN +30CN; 80AN + 50AN + 30CN (where NF – nitrofos NPK; CAN – calcium-ammonium nitrate; AN – ammonium nitrate; CN – calcium nitrate) and control (without N) applied in split rates at the beginning of spring regrowth (80 kg N ha−1), stem elongation (80 or 50) and flower buds visible stages (30). The yielding effect of tested fertilization variants was significant in comparison with the control (2.24 t ha−1). The highest mean seed yield (3.64 t ha−1) was collected from 80AN + 80AN and 80CAN + 80CAN variants. Mean values of 4 years indicate that the second N rate division (80 + 50 + 30) decreased yield, although not significantly in comparison with these two N treatments. Plants grown on these treatments have developed different patterns of growth to yield the seeds. These patterns were characterized by very high crop growth rate during flowering (above 21 g m−2 day−1) and negative at maturation (down to −2.5 g m−2 day−1). Plants fertilized with ammonium nitrate (80AN + 80AN) reached maximum growth rate earlier (65 days), which lasted longer (20 days) than plants fertilized with calcium-ammonium nitrate (71  days lasting 17.5 days). Plants grown on the control treatment reached the highest crop growth rate within 79 days (14.8 g m−2 day−1), which lasted 15 days.