137-1 Site-Specific and Weather-Adjusted Nitrogen Management in Maize: Adapt-N Increased Grower Profits and Decreased Nitrogen Inputs in Two Seasons of On-Farm Strip Trials.

Poster Number 2017

See more from this Division: SSSA Division: Soil Fertility & Plant Nutrition
See more from this Session: Nitrogen Soil Fertility and Management

Monday, November 4, 2013
Tampa Convention Center, East Exhibit Hall

Bianca Moebius-Clune1, Harold van Es2, Jeff Melkonian3, Laura Joseph4, Arthur T DeGaetano5, Shannon L. Gomes6 and Daniel Moebius-Clune3, (1)1400 Independence Ave SW, USDA-NRCS, Washington, DC
(2)Soil and Crop Sciences, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY
(3)Crop and Soil Sciences, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY
(4)Cornell University, Ithaca, NY
(5)Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY
(6)Cedar Basin Crop Consulting, Inc., Decorah, IA
Poster Presentation
  • Moebius-Clune_Adapt-N_Poster_FINALupload.pdf (271.0 kB)
  • Abstract:
    More efficient nitrogen management in maize production systems is essential, because of the well-documented negative environmental impacts of N on water quality and greenhouse gas emissions. The web-based Adapt-N tool (http://adapt-n.cals.cornell.edu) was designed to improve maize N use efficiency by shrinking the uncertainty around the agronomic optimum N rate. It accounts for the dynamic, complex and locally-specific interactions among weather, soil and management that affect crop-available N in the soil and crop N uptake. Adapt-N uses near real-time high resolution climate data now available for the United State east of the 100th meridian, and field-specific management, soils, and crop information supplied by users via a user-friendly web-interface, as inputs for a dynamic simulation model (Precision Nitrogen Management model). The model simulates daily soil C and N transformations, soil water storage and transport, and uptake of water and N by the maize crop. The Adapt-N web-interface provides a sidedress N recommendation and graphs visualizing seasonal dynamics over time of soil N, crop growth, temperature and precipitation for a user’s location. In collaboration with consultants, extension staff, and growers in the Northeast (mostly NY) and Midwest (mostly IA), we beta-tested the Adapt-N tool to compare Adapt-N recommended rates with current grower practice in replicated on-farm strip trials in grain and silage maize in 2011 and 2012, with further trials in progress during the 2013 growing season. On average, N application rates were reduced by 74 kg ha-1 (66 lbs ac-1) in NY and 36 kg ha-1 (32 lbs ac-1) in IA.  Yield losses with reduced N rates were negligible at 53 kg ha-1 (1 bu ac-1) on average across all trials, except in a small number of cases where the tool was improperly used, model adjustments were needed, or unpredictable late season factors influenced outcomes. Higher Adapt-N recommendations were justified by higher yields when drought was not the greater limiting factor. On average, Adapt-N use increased grower profits by about $77 ha-1 ($31 ac-1) in NY and $49 ha-1 ($20 ac-1) in IA, with Adapt-N increasing profits in 80% and 75% of trials, respectively. Adapt-N whole farm implementation on a NY grain farm led to savings of over $30,000 and over 30,000 kg of N fertilizer on 373 hectares of maize. Adapt-N also significantly reduced estimated N leaching and denitrification losses. Two years of on-farm testing thus show that the use of Adapt-N for sidedress N recommendations provides economic advantages to growers, improves N use efficiency, and reduces environmental impacts of N use in maize production.

    See more from this Division: SSSA Division: Soil Fertility & Plant Nutrition
    See more from this Session: Nitrogen Soil Fertility and Management

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