Potassium availability in Brazilian semiarid soils cultivated with melon
Pesquisa Agropecuária Tropical
Haplic Vertisols and Typic Quartzipsamments are among the main classes of soils used for melon production in the Brazilian semiarid region. Potassium (K) is the nutrient most extracted by yellow melon fruits and, for this reason, high doses of potassium fertilizers are often applied to these soils. This study aimed to evaluate potassium fractions in soils of the Brazilian semiarid region, during the cultivation cycle of fertigated yellow melon. Two experiments were carried out with two types of
... t with two types of soil (Haplic Vertisol and Typic Quartzipsamment). For the Vertisol, a 7 x 2 [seven evaluation periods and two soil layers (0-20 cm and 20-40 cm)] factorial arrangement was established, with four replications, totaling 56 experimental units. For the Quartzipsamment, a 9 x 2 [nine collection times and two soil layers (0-20 cm and 20-40 cm)] factorial arrangement was used, with four replications, totaling 72 experimental units. The non-exchangeable K fraction was dominant in both soils, mainly in the 0-20 cm layer, and represents an important reserve of this nutrient for melon cultivation, especially in Haplic Vertisols. The decrease in the concentrations of the soluble and exchangeable forms and the increase in the non-exchangeable form indicated an increase in the fixation of this nutrient, by fixation in the Vertisol and leaching in the Quartzipsamment, at the end of the melon cycle, when the amount of K accumulated by the plant was lower.