Assessment of the Effect of the Mineral Fertilization System on the Nutritional Status of Maize Plants and Grain Yield Prediction
A strict field experiment with maize was carried out in the years 2009–2011 at the Experimental Station of the Poznań University of Life Sciences. The impact of mineral fertilization levels on the nutritional status of plants at an early development stage 5–6 leaves (BBCH 15/16) was assessed, as well as the possibility of using biomass and the current state of nutrient supply to predict grain yield. The adopted assumptions were verified on the basis of field experiments with nine variants of
... nine variants of mineral fertilization and two maize varieties (EURALIS Semences, Lescar, France) (ES Palazzo and ES Paroli SG—"stay-green" (SG)). Regardless of the variety tested, the plants were under-nutritioned with calcium and magnesium. Plant nutritional status and the accumulation of minerals at the BBCH 15/16 stage were the main factors determining the variability of maize grain yields. In addition, it was shown that maize biomass in the BBCH 15/16 stage, calcium content and the N:K ratio significantly determined grain yield of traditional variety. The yield of the "stay-green" hybrid was largely shaped by plant biomass in the BBCH 15/16 stage, potassium, calcium, magnesium contents and N:Mg ratio. Regression analysis showed that grain yield of the tested maize varieties was determined by plant biomass and its content from 59% to 69%.