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  • Author or Editor: J. Benton Jones Jr. x
  • Journal of the American Society for Horticultural Science x
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Abstract

Tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill. ‘Floradel’) plants were grown under greenhouse conditions in a modified Hoagland’s solution to determine the influence of NO3:NH4 ratio (100:0, 75:25, 50:50, 25:75) on vegetative growth, fruit development, and tissue levels of N, P, K, Ca, and Mg at 3 stages of maturity. Vegetative growth prior to fruit set was increased significantly by adding 25% of the N as NH4, although higher NH4 ratios reduced vegetative growth. During flower and fruit development, the number of fruit formed with each flower cluster was not influenced by the NO3:NO4 ratio, although fruit weights were reduced significantly when NH4 supplied any part of the N form. With each increment of NH4 in the N ratio, tissue P increased whereas K, Ca, and Mg decreased. Kjeldahl N (less NO3-N) in the vegetative tissue at all harvests increased with each increment of NH4 in the N ratio. It is concluded that the use of Kjeldahl N as an indicator of the N status of the plant without consideration of the effect of N form on the percentage of N as well as the uptake and distribution of other essential elements could be misleading and potentially a misuse of this diagnostic tool.

Open Access