Hop yield evaluation depending on experimental plot area under different nitrogen management

https://doi.org/10.17221/4108-PSECitation:Bavec F., Čeh Brežnik B., Brežnik M. (2003): Hop yield evaluation depending on experimental plot area under different nitrogen management. Plant Soil Environ., 49: 163-167.
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Numerous agricultural and associated ecological effects such as mineral nitrogen fertilising influence the yield of hop (Humulus lupulus L.) cones and its quality. Using a wide spacing of plants (in our case 2.6 × 0.8 m) we want to answer a hypothetical question about an appropriate number of test plants per plot vs. experimental plot area. The aim of this study was to compare the effect of different rates of mineral nitrogen, fertiliser combinations and their nitrogen split application on hop yield evaluated from different plot areas (micro trial: 30 plants per plot; macro trial: 320 plants per plot). Hop yield varied significantly between treatments, plot areas, years and interactions (year × treatment, plot area × treatment) (all at P £ 0.01). Cone yield in a micro trial was higher in all treatments in comparison with yield in a macro trial. In spite of common intensive fertilisation the appropriate fertilising combination and mineral N rate can influence the yield. Target nitrogen rate of160 kg mineral N/ha (at the level from 40.0 to62.5 kg nitrate N/ha in soil depth to0.3 m) and cheaper combination of calcium-ammonium nitrate (50 kg N/ha) at the beginning of vegetation plus urea (110 kg N/ha) for top dressing can be recommended. On plot areas of each size and each year all treatments showed similar trends of fertilising effect on yield. In spite of higher yield in the micro trial and lower coefficient of variation in comparison with the macro trial, the results proved that a risk of incorrect yield analysing in macro trials is very low for field experiments.
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