SOIL APPLIED SULFATE IMPROVES VEGETABLE AMARANTH QUALITY

in HortScience
Author: D,J. MAKUS1
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  • 1 USDA-ARS, BOONEVILLE, AR 72927

Sulfate, as K2SO4, was applied to silt loam (Leadvale) soils of pH of 5.0 and 7.1 at rates of 0, 6, 18 and 36 kg S/ha. Nitrogen, as NH4NO3, was split applied at 0 and 120 kg/ha. All treatments received 55 and 45 kg/ha of P and K, respectively. Twenty day-old plants of accession RRC 241 were transplanted on 12 July 1990 and harvested 47 days later. Supplemental SO. had no effect on plant ht or yield but increased soil solution SO4 levels at the end of the season. Leaf blade N and S levels were increased at the highest SO4 rate. Higher SO4 rates increased leaf blade chlorophyll (chloro) `a', total chloro and total carotenoid levels. Response of leaf blade total sulfur, sulfate and organic sulfur to supplemental SO4 was linear. Organic to inorganic S ratios were unchanged. Plants grown at pH 5 had lower yields but higher leaf blade K, Al, Fe, Mn, Zn and Cu levels. Plants grown at pH 7 had higher leaf blade P, Ca, Na, and chloro levels. Soil pH did not effect soil solution SO4 levels. N reduced soil pH, and leaf blade P, Ca, Mg, Zn but increased soil electrolytes, leaf blade N, Na, Mn, chloro `a' and `b', and total carotenoids. Leaf blade N was the only leaf consituent from plants grown at both pHs correlated with leaf blade pigments.

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