Nitrogen Management Effect on the Production of Two Sweet Sorghum Cultivars under Arid Regions Conditions
E.A. Abd El-Lattief
A two years field study was conducted to evaluate the effect of response of two sweet sorghum cultivars to different sources and time of nitrogen application during 2009 and 2010 at experimental farm Faculty of Agriculture, South Valley University at Qena Governorate, Egypt. Two cultivars viz. Tracy and Honey and six combination of source and application time of nitrogen fertilizes viz. ammonium sulphate, 20.5% N in two equal doses (T1) and in three equal doses (T2), ammonium nitrate, 33.5% N in two equal doses (T3) and in three equal doses (T4), urea, 46.5% N in two equal doses (T5) and in three equal doses (T6) were tested in the study. The experiment was laid out in split plot design with cultivars in main plots and nitrogen fertilizers in sub-plots. Among sweet sorghum cultivars, cv Honey had the highest stalk height, stalk diameter, number of internodes per stalk, Brix value, sucrose content, apparent purity percentage and stalk and forage (leaves) yields and lowest reducing sugar content. Application of T4 gave the highest value of the above measurements and lowest reducing sugar content. Cultivar and nitrogen treatments interaction was significant on stalk and forage yields as well as reducing sugar content. The highest stalk and forage yields and lowest reducing sugar content were obtained by planting cv Honey and application of ammonium nitrate in three equal doses (at planting , 4 leaf stage and booting). Plant height, stalk diameter, forage yield, brix and sucrose were positively and strongly correlated with stalk yield.
Received: April 06, 2011;
Accepted: June 04, 2011;
Published: July 05, 2011
Sorghum (Sorghum biocolor L. Moench) is multipurpose cereal, contains
grain, forage and sweet types. Sweet sorghum mainly is planted for a good source
of syrup, forage and ethanol production. Sweet sorghum gave higher ethanol concentration
than cassava (Nadir et al., 2009). Furthermore,
sweet sorghum has a lower water requirement and drought tolerant, meantime,
its rapid growth rate early maturity high total energy value as well as adapted
to sub-tropical and temperate region of the world (Rego
et al., 2003). Cane syrup (locally known as black honey) is a very
popular product in Egypt, its manufacture consumes about 4.8% of the total sugar
cane area and the continuous demand necessitated more attention towards sweet
sorghum as an ancillary source of syrup (Besheit et al.,
Yield and quality of syrup are influenced by variety, fertilization, plant
population, sowing date and soil type. However, variety and nitrogen fertilizers
source are the most important especially under local conditions. Worth to mention,
Mokadem et al. (1999) and El-Wafa
and El-Hamd (2001) reported that not all sweet sorghum are equally good
for syrup production but there is a good deal of variation from variety i.e.,
quantity of stalk per area and technological characters. Among sweet sorghum
cultivars, Chohan et al. (2003) compared ten
sorghum cultivars and reported cv F-9905 produced the highest green fodder yield
(69.62 t ha-1) followed by F-9904 (69.44 t ha-1) and F-9909
(69.06 t ha-1). Also add that, check varieties JS-88 and JS-263 produced
65.55 and 63.33 t ha-1 green fodder yields, respectively. Almodares
et al. (2007a) found that differences between cultivars (Rio, Keller,
Sofra and Soave) in germination and seedling fresh weight under salinity conditions.
Nitrogen has now been recognized as one of the most limiting nutrient. Its
use and demand is continuously increasing day by day. Since it is highly mobile,
it is subjected to greater loss from the soil plant system. Even under the best
management practices 30-50% of the applied N is lost through different agencies
(Stevenson, 1985) and hence the farmer is compelled to
apply more than the actual need of the crop to meet the loss. The loss of N
not only harasses the farmer but it has also hazardous impact on the environment
(Kessel et al., 1993; Gosh
and Bhat, 1998). Thus it is the need of the time to search not only for
the source N of a crop but also to find out appropriate time for its application
to reduce the loss. Different approaches may be adopted for effective and efficient
utilization of nitrogenous fertilizers. Zeidan and El-Kramany
(2001) in wheat and Ahmed et al. (2007) in
sorghum, reported that there were significant differences due to N sources in
growth, yield and yield components. Nemeat (2001) reported
that ammonium nitrate as a nitrogen fertilizer source surpassed other nitrogen
fertilizer sources i.e., urea or ammonium sulphate in sugar beet and produced
the highest values of root length and diameter, root and top fresh weight (kg/plant),
root, top and sugar yields (tons/fed) as well as TSS percentage. Fertilization
sugar beet in the form of ammonium nitrate (33.5% N) and splitting nitrogen
fertilizer dose at three equal portions significantly maximized root and sugar
yields (Sharief et al., 2004). Split application
of N has been found more efficient method as compared with a sole doze at the
time of application. Tripathi and Bhan (1995) found
that application of 60 kg N ha-1 in two split (half at planting in
furrows 2-3 cm below the seed and remaining half side dressed about 5 weeks
after planting) significantly increased the sorghum yield and its attributes.
Sidedress application of nitrogen fertilizer at eight-leaf growth stage is feasible
and would be beneficial for sorghum (Khosla et al.,
There is a considerable interest in the source and time of nitrogen fertilization required to maximize the total yield and quality can be obtained. Thus, the main objective of this study was to evaluate the response of two cultivars of sweet sorghum to source and time of nitrogen application under arid conditions.
MATERIALS AND METHODS
The investigation was carried out at experimental farm Faculty of Agriculture,
South Valley University at Qena Governorate, Egypt, for two years during summer
2009 and 2010. The farm is located at an altitude of 79 m above mean sea level
and is intersected by 26°10' N latitude and 32°43' E longitude. The
weather is very hot and dry from May to October where temperatures can reach
up to 40°C. On the other hand, the weather is usually warm during winter
months and rainfall is rare. The relative humidity averages about 55%. The soil
of the experimental site is sandy-loam throughout its profile (74.2 sand, 16.4%
silt and 9.4% clay). Its pH value of 7.82, 1.89 EC (dS m-1), 0.48%
organic matter content, 0.33% total N, 8.32, 198 ppm available P and K, respectively.
The treatments consisted two cultivars i.e., Tracy (V1) and Honey (V2) and six combination of source and application time of nitrogen fertilizes i.e., ammonium sulphate; (NH4)2SO4 (20.5% N) in two equal doses; at planting and 4 leaf stage (T1), ammonium sulphate; (NH4)2SO4 (20.5% N) in three equal doses; at planting, 4 leaf stage and booting (T2), ammonium nitrate; NH4NO3 (33.5% N) in two equal doses; at planting and 4 leaf stage (T3), ammonium nitrate; NH4NO3 (33.5% N) in three equal doses; at planting, 4 leaf stage and booting (T4), urea; (NH2)2 CO (46.5% N) in two equal doses; at planting and 4 leaf stage (T5) and urea; (NH2)2 CO (46.5% N) in three equal doses; at planting, 4 leaf stage and booting (T6). The experiment was laid out in randomized complete block split plot design with three replications keeping cultivars in main plot and combination of source and application time of nitrogen fertilizes in sub plot. Individual sub plots measured 3.0 m in width and 7 m in length.
Seeds sweet sorghum cultivars "Tracy and Honey" (24 kg ha-1) were hand sown at 5 and 8 May in the first and second years, respectively as the usual dry method of sowing on one side of ridges (60x20 cm). The preceding winter crop was wheat in both years. The N, P2O5 and K2O fertilizes were applied at 170, 55 and 60 kg ha-1, respectively. The other agronomic practices were kept normal and uniform for all the treatments.
The plants were harvested at hard dough stage in both years. At harvest time,
the following traits were determined from a minimum of twenty five randomly
sampled plants from each sub plot: 1-stalk height, 2-stalk diameter, 3-number
of internodes per stalk, 4-brix value in the juice (using Brix Hydrometer),
5-sucrose content in 100 cm3 of juice using Sacharemeter according
to AOAC (1995), 6-apparent purity percentage (sucrose %
*100/birx %) and 7-reducing sugar content according by Chemical Control Lab
of Sugar and Integrated Industries Company, Anonymous (1981).
Stalk and forage (leaves) yields (tons ha-1) were also determined
immediately after harvest in the field from the three central rows of each sub
All measurements in this study were analyzed using an analysis of variance
appropriate for a randomized complete block split plot design with cultivars
as the main factor and nitrogen treatments as the split factor. Mean separation
of treatment effects in this study was accomplished using Duncans multiple
test (Steel and Torrie, 1980). Probability levels lower
than 0.05 were categorized as significant. All data analyses in this study were
accomplished using the COSTAT system for windows, version 6.311 (CoHort software,
Berkeley, CA, USA).
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
Cultivars effect: Data in Table 1 shows analysis of
variance for sweet sorghum cultivars and nitrogen treatments on stalk height,
stalk diameter, number of internodes per stalk, brix value, sucrose content,
apparent purity percentage, reducing sugar content and stalk and forage (leaves)
yields. The results showed that effect cultivars on the above measurements were
significant (p<0.05) except for apparent purity in the first and second seasons.
Cv Honey had the highest stalk height (308.4 and 308.8 cm), stalk diameter (2.163
and 2.341 cm), number of internodes per stalk (16.22 and 15.93), stalk yield
(37.844 and 35.078 tons ha-1) and forage (leaves) yield (11.600 and
11.961 tons ha-1) in 2 consequence years, respectively (Table
2). High stalk yield of cv Honey may be due to its long and thick stem.
El-Shafai et al. (2005) found similar results.
Also, Mokadem et al. (1999) compared thirteen
sweet sorghum cultivars and reported cv Honey among those cultivars had the
highest yield of stalk, juice quality and syrup production. Cv Honey had the
highest sucrose content (10.80 and 10.27%) among sweet sorghum cultivars and
this is because of the highest Brix value (15.39 and 14.66%) and lowest reducing
sugar content (2.517 and 2.396%), (Table 2). This could be
better explained by genetically differences rather than environmental. These
results are in harmony with those obtained by El-Hoda et
al. (1994). Almodares et al. (2007b)
found that cv Rio had the highest stalk yield, brix value and sucrose content.
Almodares and Dosti (2008) compared two sweet sorghum
cultivars (Soave and Sofra) and found that the sucrose content of Soave was
higher than Sofra but its glucose and fructose content was lower than Sofra.
Nitrogen fertilizers: The effect of nitrogen treatments on the previous
measurements was significant (p<0.01) except for apparent purity and number
of internodes per stalk in the first and second years (Table 1).
Application of T4 (ammonium nitrate, NH4NO3,
33.5% N in three equal doses at, planting , 4 leaf stage and booting) gave the
highest stalk height (317.2 and 315.8 cm), stalk diameter (2.350 and 2.330 cm),
stalk yield (43.583 and 40.750 tons ha-1) and forage (leaves) yield
(13.683 and 14.767 tons ha-1) in 2 consequence years, respectively
(Table 2). Also, T4 had the highest sucrose content
(11.75 and 10.98%) among nitrogen treatments and this is because of the highest
brix value (16.67 and 16.18%) and lowest reducing sugar content (2.433 and 2.227%).
The lowest value of stalk height (285.3 and 297.8 cm), stalk diameter (1.897
and 2.050 cm), stalk yield (29.500 and 27.917 tons ha-1) and forage
(leaves) yield (6.900 and 7.300 tons ha-1), were obtained from T1
(ammonium sulphate (NH4)2SO4, 20.5% N in two
equal doses at planting and 4 leaf stage). Also T1 had the lowest
sucrose content (8.90 and 8.67%) among nitrogen treatments and this is because
of the lowest Brix value (12.17 and 12.52%) and highest reducing sugar content
(2.852 and 2.767%), (Table 2). The influence of nitrogen fertilizer
as ammonium nitrate (33.5% N) on agronomic efficiency is mainly due to their
effect on soil reaction and nutrient availability .These results are in good
agreement with those reported by Nemeat (2001). Also
the increases in the previous measurements due to splitting nitrogen fertilizer
dose in three equal portions may be attributed to minimize the lose of nitrogen
by leaching besides saving suitable amount of nitrogen as plant need during
the different stages of life which increased growth and yield. These results
are in good accordance with those reported by Sharief et
|| Mean squares of some traits of sweet sorghum year (2009,
|* and ** significant at 5 and 1% level, respectively
|| The effect of cultivars and nitrogen treatments on some traits
of sweet sorghum year (2009, 2010)
|Means followed by the same letter are not significantly different
from one another based on Duncans multiple test at p≤0.05. T1
(ammonium sulphate, 20.5% N in two equal doses at planting and 4 leaf
stage), T2 (ammonium sulphate, 20.5% N in three equal doses at
planting, 4 leaf stage and booting), T3 (ammonium nitrate, 33.5%
N in two equal doses at planting and 4 leaf stage), T4 (ammonium
nitrate, 33.5% N in three equal doses at planting, 4 leaf stage and booting),
T5 (urea, 46.5% N in two equal doses at planting and 4 leaf stage)
and T6 (urea, 46.5% N in three equal doses at planting, 4 leaf
stage and booting)
Interaction effect: In both years, the interaction between cultivars
and nitrogen treatments was significant (p<0.01) on stalk yield, forage yield
and reducing sugar content (Table 1, Fig. 1).
Cv Honey significantly increased stalk yield and forage yield under all nitrogen
treatments except under T6 (urea, (NH2)2 CO,
46.5% N in three equal doses at planting, 4 leaf stage and booting) in both
years (Fig. 1a, b). Honey surpassed Tracy
in stalk yield by 23.7, 28.8, 11.9, 20.1 and 31.7% in the first season and by
3.7, 9.8, 14.0, 33.7 and 18.5 in the second season for T1, T2,
T3, T4 and T5, respectively. The highest stalk
yield (47.570 and 46.63 tons ha-1) and forage yield (14.87 and 17.13
tons ha-1) in 2009 and 2010, respectively were obtained from V2T4.
The lowest stalk yield (25.300 and 26.130 tons ha-1) and forage yield
(6.100 and 6.900 tons ha-1) were obtained from V1T1
(Fig. 1a,b). In contrast, the highest reducing
sugar content (3.200 and 2.850%) was obtained from interaction with V1T1
and the lowest (2.200 and 1.900%) from V2T4 (Fig.
Correlation coefficient: The results of correlations analysis between
stalk yield and all studied parameters are shown in Table 3.
It was observed that there was a high and positive correlation between stalk
yield and plant height (r = 0.768 and r = 0. 0.671), stalk diameter (r = 0.758
and r = 0.534), forage yield (r = 0.747 and r = 0.769), brix (r = 0.630 and
r = 0.697) and sucrose (r = 0.712 and r = 0.471) in 2009 and 2010, respectively.
These results showed that any positive increase in such characters will suffice
the boast in stalk yield. These findings are in agreement with Makanda
et al. (2009) who found that plant height (r = 0.641) and stem diameter
(r = 0.487) were positively and highly significantly (p<0.01) correlated
to biomass weight.
|Fig. 1 (a-c):
||Interaction between cultivars (V1, V2) and nitrogen treatments
(T1, T2, T3, T4, T5, T6) on stalk and forage yields (tons ha-1)
as well as reducing sugar (%) of sweet sorghum in 2009-2010 years
|| Correlation coefficient between stalk yield and all studied
traits of sweet sorghum year (2009, 2010)
|**Significant 1 % level, ns: indicate that not significant
On the other hand, there were a negative and highly significant (p<0.01)
correlation (r = -0.568 and r = -0.755 in the first and second years, respectively)
observed between stalk yield and reducing sugar. The correlation between stalk
yield and internodes plant-1 is weak (r = 0.292 and r = 0.397) in
2009 and 2010, respectively. Interestingly, no significant correlation was observed
between stalk yield and apparent purity in both years.
There were significant differences (p<0.05) between sweet sorghum cultivars except purity percentage in both years. In addition, significant differences (p<0.01) between nitrogen treatments expect internodes plant-1 and purity percentage. The interaction between cultivars and nitrogen treatments was significant on stalk yield, forage yield and reducing sugar content. The highest stalk and forage yields as well as lowest reducing sugar content were obtained from V2T4. Based on these results to obtain the highest stalk and forage yields as well as lowest reducing sugar content, it is recommended to planting sweet sorghum cv Honey and application of nitrogen as form ammonium nitrate (NH4NO3, 33.5% N) in three equal doses (at planting, 4 leaf stage and booting) under similar soil and climatic conditions.
1: El-Wafa, A.M.A. and A.S.A. El-Hamd, 2001. Evaluation of some sweet sorghum varieties under different plant population in Upper Egypt. J. Agric. Res. Develop., 21: 475-492.
2: Ahmed, A.G., N.M. Zaki and M.S. Hassanein, 2007. Response of grain sorghum to different nitrogen sources. Res. J. Agric. Biol. Sci., 3: 1002-1008.
Direct Link |
3: Almodares, A., M.R. Hadi and B. Dosti, 2008. The effects of salt stress on growth parameters and carbohydrates contents in sweet sorghum. Res. J. Environ. Sci., 2: 298-304.
CrossRef | Direct Link |
4: Almodares, A., M.R. Hadi and B. Dosti, 2007. Effects of salt stress on germination percentage and seedling growth in sweet sorghum cultivars. J. Boil. Sci., 7: 1492-1495.
CrossRef | Direct Link |
5: Almodares, A., M.R. Hadi, M. Ranjbar and R. Taheri, 2007. The effects of nitrogen treatments, cultivars and harvest stages on stalk yield and sugar content in sweet sorghum. Asian J. Plant Sci., 6: 423-426.
CrossRef | Direct Link |
6: Anonymous 1981. Chemical control in Egyptian sugar production factories Jan.,
7: AOAC., 1995. Official Methods of Analysis. 16th Edn., Association of Official Analytical Chemists, Washington, DC., USA
Direct Link |
8: Besheit, S.Y., A.A. Dooh, G.B. Maria and M.K. Ali, 1996. Stalk and technochemical characteristics of two sweet sorghum cultivars as influenced by nitrogen fertilization. Adv. Agric. Res., 1: 36-42.
9: Chohan, M.S.M., M. Naeem, A.H. Khan and S. Salah-ud-Din, 2003. Performance of newly developed forage varieties of sorghum (Sorghum bicolor L. Moench). Asian J. Plant Sci., 2: 48-50.
CrossRef | Direct Link |
10: El-Shafai, A., M. Bekheet and K. El-Aref, 2005. Effect of biological and mineral nitrogen fertilization on sweet sorghum (Sorghum bicolor, L.). Egypt. J. Appl. Sci., 20: 464-483.
11: Gosh, B.C. and R. Bhat, 1998. Environmental hazards of nitrogen loading in wetland rice fields. Environ. Pollut., 102: 123-126.
12: Kessel, C.V., D.J. Pennock and R.E. Farrel, 1993. Seasonal variation in denitrification and nitrous oxide evolution at the landscape scale. Soil Sci. Soc. Am. J., 57: 988-995.
13: Khosla, R., M.M. Alley and P.H. Davis, 2000. Nitrogen management in no-tillage grain sorghum production: I. Rate and time of application. Agron. J., 92: 321-328.
CrossRef | Direct Link |
14: Makanda, I., P. Tongoona and J. Derera, 2009. Quantification of genotypic variability for stem sugar accumulation and associated traits in new sweet sorghum varieties. Afric.Crop Sci. Conf. Proc., 9: 391-398.
15: Mokadem, SH.A., M.A. Salem and M.T.N. El-Hoda, 1999. Evaluation of yield and its components as well as syrup production of some sweet sorghum varieties (Sorghum biocolor L. Moench) grown under middle Egypt environmental conditions. Minia J. Agric. Res. Develop., 19: 207-218.
16: Nadir, N., M. Mel, M.I.A. Karim and R.M. Yunus, 2009. Comparison of sweet sorghum and cassava for ethanol production by using Saccharomyces cerevisiae. J. Applied Sci., 9: 3068-3073.
CrossRef | Direct Link |
17: Nemeat, A.E.A.E., 2001. Yield and quality of sugar beet as affected by sources levels and time application of nitrogen fertilizer. J. Agric. Res. Tanta Univ., 27: 450-462.
18: El-Hoda N.M.T., M.S. Laila, F.A. Abd El-Latif and M.K. Aly, 1994. Effect of plant population and nitrogen fertilization in relation to yield and quality of sweet sorghum. Egypt. J. Appl. Sci., 9: 860-868.
19: Rego, T.J., V.R. Nagesvara, B. Seeling, G. Pardhasaradhi and D.K. Kumar, 2003. Nutrient balance a guide to improving sorghum and ground based dry land cropping systems in semi-arid tropical India. Field Crops Res., 81: 53-68.
20: Sharief, A.E., A.N. Attia, A.A. Salama and A.E. Mousa, 2004. Effect of nitrogen fertilizer sources and time of splitting on root yield and quality of sugare beet in North Delta. 4th Scient. Conf. Agric. Sci., Assiut, 2: 856-866.
21: Steel, R.G.D. and J.H. Torrie, 1980. Principles and Procedures of Statistics. 2nd Edn., McGraw-Hill, New York.
22: Stevenson, F.J., 1985. The Nitrogen Cycle in Soil: Global and Ecological Aspects. In: Cycles of Soils, Stevenson, F.J., (Ed.). Wiley Int. Sci. Pub., New York, USA., pp: 106-153
23: Tripathi, R.Y. and S. Bhan, 1995. Effect of level and method of nitrogen application and moisture conservation practices on growth and yield of rainfed sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) under light textured, eroded soils of central Uttar Pradesh. Ind. J. Agron., 40: 47-50.
24: Zeidan, M.S. and M.F. El-Kramany, 2001. Effect of organic manure and slow-release N-fertilizers on the productivity of wheat (Triticumaestivum L.) in sandy soil. Acta Agronom. Hungarica, 49: 379-385.
Direct Link |