The influence of concentration and ratio of nitrogen and phosphorus in the rooting medium upon nitrogen and phosphorus in the leaves of the Anjou pear tree Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/79408041w

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  • The nutrient elements needed for the optimum growth and yield of pear trees is vitally important to the pear growers. The knowledge of the amounts and kinds of fertilizer to apply to obtain this growth could increase the production and cut the costs for these growers. Field experiments have been made on the nutritional elements needed for pears, but the results were affected by many variants, such as the availability of the elements and rainfall. The growing of fruit trees in sand with controlled nutrient solutions added had been used to obtain data not possible to obtain under field conditions. Since other factors affect the absorption of the nutrient elements in the field experiments, an experiment for the application of varied nutrient solutions on one year old Anjou pear trees, grown in sand culture, was undertaken. The purpose was to try to determine the influence that the concentration and the ratio of nitrogen and phosphorus in the nutrient solutions would have on the amount of nitrogen and phosphorus which the pear trees would absorb into the leaves. One year old pear trees were grown in a sand culture in a greenhouse through one growth period. The experiment was set up as a factrial with three levels each of nitrogen and phosphorus. The solutions were applied through an automatic system which irrigated the trees every hour. The solutions were checked daily and were changed once every week. The trees were harvested and the leaves were analyzed for nitrogen and phosphorus. The results indicated that the supply of nitrogen was adequate at all levels to support normal development of the leaves of the trees. The supply of nitrogen in the nutrient solution did not cause the percent of nitrogen in the leaves to vary by a statistically significant amount. The analysis of the variations of the percent of phosphorus in the leaves showed significant differences between treatments. The main effect of the phosphorus in the nutrient solution was to increase the phosphorus content of the leaves as the supply of phosphorus was increased. The main effect of phosphorus on nitrogen was negative at all levels. This effect was noticeable at the highest phosphorus level, but it was not statistically significant. The ability of the Anjou pear tree, to absorb both nitrogen and phosphorus from a nutrient solution with very low levels of each of the elements, implies that heavy fertilization with either of these elements may not be necessary for normal, vigorous growth; this is especially true in the case of phosphorus.
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