Response of Sugar Beet Quantity and Quality to Nitrogen and Potasium Fertilization under Sandy Soils Conditions
Eman I. El-Sarag
Sameh H. Moselhy
Sugar beet is a tolerant crop to salinity and wide range of climate, so, it
could be economically grown in light textural soils (sandy) such as at the Northern
parts of Egypt. Delivering higher quality of sugar beet roots to the factory
is determined by the concentration of sucrose and impurities in the root, which,
is mainly related to Nitrogen (N) and Potassium (K) fertilizers program. So,
the effect of four N levels (105, 141, 176, 211 N kg ha-1) and four
K levels (60, 100, 140 and 180 K2O kg ha-1) on multi germ
sugar beet cultivar (Ymer) under sandy soil conditions was studied in North
Sinai Governorate, Egypt (31°N and 32°E) during two winter seasons (2009/2010;
2010/2011). Results showed that the highest sugar beet yields of top (15.478
and 17.695 t ha-1), root (41.184 and 49.488 t ha-1) and
gross sugar (7.622 and 8.936 t ha-1) were obtained by adding the
highest fertilizers rates (211 N kg and 140 K2O kg per hectare).
The maximum sucrose percent (18.64 and 18. 87%) was achieved by adding 100 K2O
kg and 141 N kg ha-1. Gross sugar yield per hactare was positively
correlated with yields of sugar beet top (0.974) and roots (0.823) ha-1
but negatively correlated with quality index (-0.987). Path analysis indicated
that, root yield ha-1, sucrose% and the interaction between root
yield and top yield were the most variable contribution of gross sugar yield.
Received: January 01, 2013;
Accepted: February 23, 2013;
Published: May 07, 2019
Sugar beet (Beta vulgaris L.) is one of the most important crops in
Egypt as it is well adapted to Egyptian environment especially reclaimed lands
and has essential position in winter crop rotation not only in fertile soils
but also in poor, sandy, saline alkaline and calcareous soils. Also, it is far
better than sugar cane when water use efficiency is concerned; one kilogram
of sugar needs about 1.4 and 4.0 m3 water by sugar beet and sugar
cane, respectively (Ouda, 2001). Adding suitable fertilizers,
such as macro and/or micro nutrients may be one of the favorable factors for
the quantity and quality of sugar beet (Ouda, 2002).
So, appropriate nitrogen and potassium fertilizers are essential for high root
and sugar yields but an excess of these nutrients decreases juice purity and
sugar extractability, in this concern Khan et al. (1998)
noticed that sugar yield, sucrose and purity percentages of sugar beet increased
with increasing N levels from 0 up to 120 kg N ha-1 but adding 180
kg N ha-1 decreased sucrose percent. Also, Increasing N levels increased
root and sugar yields (Ismail, 2002; El-Sayed,
2005), top yield (Ouda, 2002; Osman,
2005) but, decrease sucrose and purity percent (Zalat
and Ibrahim, 2002; Azzay, 2004). On the other hand,
Abou-Zeid and Osman (2005) reported that there was
no evidence for significant differences in the total soluble solids as well
as sucrose and purity percentages due to increasing N levels. In Egypt, many
investigators study the effect of various levels of N fertilizers on sugar beet
grown in clay and/or sandy soils, they concluded that the maximum root, sugar
yields, root quality and minimum sugar losses were achieved when N application
ranged between 214 and 262 kg N ha-1 (Hassanin
and Elayan, 2000; Moustafa and Darwish, 2001; Abo
El-Wafa, 2002; Hilal, 2005). Increasing nitrogen
fertilizer rates up to 120 kg N fed-1 and 240 kg N ha-1
significantly increased top, root and gross sugar yields per feddan and/or hectare
but decreased sucrose% (El-Sarag, 2008; Nasr
et al., 2011). Potassium is a very mobile element in plant tissues
and moves readily from older tissues to the growing points of the root and foliage.
Potassium uptake depends upon N uptake, plant growth, availability of K in the
soil and genotype (Carter, 1986). Kasap
and Killi (1994) in Turkey and Morrsi (1997) in Egypt,
cleared that K fertilization (up to 60 kg K2O ha-1 and
48 kg K2O/fad.) significantly increased root, top and gross sugar
yields/fad as well as root quality parameters in terms of TSS, sucrose and purity
percentages. However, the maximum sugar loss (ton ha-1) and sucrose
percent were obtained from adding the highest N and K levels (285 kg N and 114
kg K2O ha-1) (Abdel-Motagally and
Attia, 2009). Also, a significant improvement in sugar beet root, top yields
and impure sugar percent but not in sugar yield and pure sugar yield were obtained
by adding 100 kg K2O ha-1 (Mehrandish
et al., 2012). Now, there is no accurate and comprehensive information
regard to effect of nitrogen and potassium fertilizer rates on quality and quantity
features of sugar beet under sandy soil conditions. So, this research reviews
the effect nitrogen and potassium fertilizer levels on top and root yields as
well as other quantity and quality features of sugar beet in poor sandy soils
MATERIALS AND METHODS
Experimental site and treatments: Two field trials were conducted at the
experimental farm in Faculty of Environmental Agricultural Sciences (FEAS),
Suez Canal University at North Sinai Governorate, Egypt (31°N and 32°E)
during winter seasons of 2009/2010 and 2010/2011. The study aimed to examine
the effect of nitrogen and potassium fertilizer levels on quantity (top, root
and sugar yields) and quality (TSS, Sucrose, Purity and quality index%) of multi
germ sugar beet cultivar (Ymer) under sandy soil conditions. Each experiment
included 16 treatments which were the combinations of: (i) Four N levels, i.e.
105, 141, 176 and 211 N kg ha-1 and (ii) Four K levels, i.e., 60,
100, 140 and 180 K2O kg ha-1. Mechanical and chemical
analysis of experimental site soil in both seasons is presented in Table
Experimental design: A split plot design with three replicates was used;
nitrogen fertilizer levels occupied the main plots and potassium fertilizer
levels were assigned randomly to the sub plots. Plot area was 18 m2
comprised of 6 rows (50 apartx6 m length) and the spacing between hills were
Agricultural practices: In both seasons, the preceding crop was sunflower.
Sugar beet seeds were sown on October 25 and 29th in the two respective
seasons. The sugar beet plants were thinned to 2 plants hill-1 after
30 days from sowing date, then, to 1 plant hill-1 l after 10 days
later. Calcium super phosphate (15.5% P2O5) at a rate
of 76 kg P2O5 ha-1 was added at land preparation.
Potassium fertilizer at the studied levels in form of potassium sulphate (48%
K2O) was added in two equal portions; after thinning and 20 days
later. The nitrogen fertilizer levels was added in form of urea (46% N) according
to each level in three equal doses (1/3 after thinning, 1/ 3 at 70 days from
sowing and the rest was applied 25 days later). All other culture practices
were carried out as recommended.
Recorded data: At maturity (180 days from sowing), five plants were
taken at random from each plot to estimate the root total soluble solids percent
(T.S.S.%; using hand refractometer). Sucrose percent% was estimated in fresh
samples of sugar beet root by using Saccharometer according to the method described
by AOAC (1995). Purity percentage was computed according
to the equation:
At harvest (205 days from sowing). Three inner rows from each sub plots were
harvested to determine top and root yield (ton ha-1). Gross sugar
yield (ton ha-1) was calculated by multiplying root yield by sucrose%.
A sample of 15 kg of roots were taken at random from each plot and sent to Food
Technology Laboratory to determine root quality. Sugar loss was calculated using
the following formula: Sugar loss% = 0.29+0.343 (K+Na)+0.094 α-amino N
(Reinefeld et al., 1974). Quality index was
computed according to Sugar Recovery% (sucrose%-sugar loss) x100/sucrose%.
Statistical analysis: Data were statistically analyzed for the two seasons
and their combined as described by Senecore and Cochran (1981).
The mean values were compared using Duncans multiple range test according
to Duncan (1955). All statistical analysis were performed
by using analysis of variance technique of (MSTAT) Computer software package.
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
Effect of K levels: Data presented in Table 2 show
that increasing K levels increased significantly root, top yields as well as
gross sugar yield in both seasons. In combined analysis, as K levels increased
from 60 up to 180 kg K2O kg ha-1, top, root and gross
sugar yields increased from 13.133, 37.104 and 6.811 t ha-1 up to
15.478, 41.184 and 7.622 t ha-1, respectively (these increase were
by 15.22, 9.91 and 10.55%, respectively).
||Effect of nitrogen and potassium fertilizer levels on sugar
beet quantity (top, root and gross sugar yields; t ha-1) in 2009/2010
and 2010/2011 seasons and combined analysis
|*, ** and NS: Significant at p<0.05, 0.01 levels and not
significant, respectively, Means with the same letters are not significantly
different at 5% level
While, the minimum quantity of beet yields (root+sugar) were obtained when
60 kg K2O kg ha-1 was added. Concerning to sugar beet
quality, Table 3 shows there was no significant effect of
K levels on T.S.S. and purity % in both seasons. However, the highest sucrose
percent (18.64%) was obtained when 100 kg K2O ha-1 was
applied. The same trend was observed in sugar loss values, where, the maximum
value of sugar loss (2.74 %) was achieved when 60 and/or 100 kg K2O
ha-1 was added. An opposite trend was found for quality index, where,
it increased with every increment of K addition, which lead to the highest value
(84.05%) with the highest K level (180 kg K2O ha-1).
Effect of N levels: The influence of nitrogen fertilizer application
on sugar beet quantity and quality are shown in Table 2 and
3. All sugar beet yield (Top, Root and gross sugar) were affected
significantly by N-levels addition, where, each increase in N-level caused significant
increase in these yields. Top, Root and Gross sugar yields were increased from
10.608, 27.600 and 5.224 to 17.695, 49.488 and 8.936 t ha-1, respectively
(these increases were by 40.05, 44.23, 41.54%, respectively) as N-level increased
from 105 up to 211 kg N ha-1 in combined analysis. The same trend
was observed for sugar beet quality characters, where all of them affected significantly
by every addition of N-level, except purity percentage in the 1st
season and T.S.S. in combined analysis. There were no significant differences
between N application levels of 105 and 141 kg N ha-1 on T.S.S. (21.75
and 21.78%) and Sucrose percentages (18.68 and 18.87%), which were superior
than the other N-levels. The highest N-level (211 kg N ha-1) gave
the maximum sugar loss (3.20%) but the maximum quality index (81.33 and 81.57%)
was achieved with the lowest N-level (105 kg N ha-1) in the 1st
significant season and combined analysis. This favorable effect of N fertilizer
application were rather expected since the soil was sandy poor fertile one (Table
1). In this respect, Ouda (2002), El-Sarag
(2008) and Nasr et al. (2011) obtained the
high and positive response of sugar beet to N rates under sandy soil conditions.
The negative effects of high N rates on sucrose concentration reported by Draycott
(1993) and Azzay (2004).
||Effect of nitrogen and potassium fertilizer levels on sugar
beet quality (TSS, Sucrose, Purity %, Sugar loss; SL and Quality Index;
QI) in 2009/2010 and 2010/2011 seasons and combined analysis
|*, ** and NS:Significant at p<0.05, 0.01 levels and not
significant, respectively, Means with the same letters are not significantly
different at 5% level
Interaction effect: Figure 1, 2
and 3 shows the significant interaction effects between N
and K fertilizer levels on quantity (top+root yields) and quality (QI) (combined
data) on sugar beet grown under sandy soil conditions. Application of 211 kg
N and 180 kg K2O ha-1 gave the highest top and root yields
(19.21 and 50.59 t ha-1) while, the lowest quantities of sugar beet
top and root (9.71 and 25.43 t ha-1) were achieved by adding 105
kg N and 60 kg K2O ha-1. However, application of 105 kg
N and 180 kg K2O ha-1 surpassed all the other treatments
in quality index (85.63%).
|| Sugar beet top yield (t ha-1) as affected by N
and k levels (kg ha-1) interaction n combined
|| Sugar beet root yield (t ha-1) as affected by
N and k levels (kg ha-1) interaction n combined
||Sugar beet quality index (%) as affected by N and k levels
(kg ha-1) interaction in combined analysis
These results may refer to the more effective response of potassium under high
nitrogen levels for beet yields and under low nitrogen levels for quality characters,
which reflects in sucrose percent (Table 3).
Correlation coefficient: The correlation coefficients in Table
4 show relationships between gross sugar yield and each of root, top yields,
sucrose, T.S.S., purity and quality index%. Positive and highly significant
correlations were obtained between gross sugar yield and each of root yield
ha-1 (r = 0.974**) and top yield ha-1 (r = 0.823*). Also,
positive and highly significant correlation coefficients were seen between root
and top yields (r = 0.825*) as well as quality index% (r = 0.856**). However,
the root yield ha-1 was negatively and highly significantly correlated
with sucrose% (r = -0.396**). Also, T.S.S.% was negatively and highly significantly
correlated with purity (r = -0.476**). Finally, quality index was negatively
and highly significantly correlated with sugar yield (-0.987**) but positively
with root yield (0.856**). Also, sucrose percent correlated negatively but significantly
(0.675*) with quality index. All the other components were correlated non significantly
to quality index. Similar results were obtained by several workers among them
Rady et al. (2000), Assey
et al. (2005) and Nasr et al. (2011).
Path analysis: The method of path coefficients included the three yield
components i.e. root yield, top yield and sucrose%. Path analysis was practiced
in order to find the relative importance of these three characters in contributing
to gross sugar yield variation. The effects of direct and indirect path coefficients
were computed by partitioning the simple correlation coefficient into its components
(Fig. 4). Root yield ha-1 proved to have a high
direct effects on gross sugar yield followed by sucrose% compared to top yield.
|| Correlation coefficients between sugar yield (t ha-1)
and its components
|*, ** and ns: Significant at p<0.05, 0.01 levels and not
||Protoning of Simple correlation coefficients between gross
sugar yield (t ha-1) and its components (RY: Root yield, Ty:
Top yield and Sp: Sucroses percent) of sugar beet
|| Direct and joint effects of gross sugar yield (t ha-1)
components presented as a percentage of variation of sugar beet
|C.D.: Coefficient of determination, %: Percentage contributed
The superiority of root yield ha-1 in its contribution on gross
sugar yield was also reported by Geweifel (1982) and
Nasr et al. (2011). The relative importance in
contributing gross sugar yield presented as percentage of variation for yield
component and their interaction are shown in (Table 5). It
is clear that, root yield ha-1, sucrose% and the interaction between
root yield and top yield contributed more gross sugar yield variation, since
R2 reached 67.75% of the total yield variation. Finally, it is of interest to
note that root yield ha-1 greatly affected the yield variation, where
the path coefficient was 0.4553 and together with its interaction with top yield
caused 53.74 of the total variation. These results are supported by Assey
et al. (2005).
It can be recommended from the obvious field traits and technological analysis
of sugar beet grown in sandy soils, that maximizing root, gross sugar yield
(t ha-1) and quality index could be obtained by adding 180 kg K2O
and 211 kg N per hectare, which could minimize sugar loss. From path analysis,
it was clear that root yield ha-1 proved to have a high direct effects
on gross sugar yield followed by sucrose% compared to top yield.
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