Fertilizer inputs, nutrient balance, and soil nutrient-supplying power in intensive, irrigated rice systems. I. Potassium uptake and K balance uri icon

abstract

  • Research in many countries indicates a negative K balance in intensive, irrigated rice systems but comparative studies across different environments are few. Using a uniform sampling methodology, we measured K uptake, K use efficiency, and K balance in six different fertilizer treatments of long-term fertility experiments with rice at 11 sites in five Asian countries. Depending on the absolute yield level, K uptake requirements of rice ranged from 17 to 30 kg K per ton of grain. For yields greater than 8 t ha(-1), total K uptake exceeded 200 kg ha(-1). The K balance at most experimental sites was negative, with an average net removal of 34-63 kg K season(-1). There was significant depletion of soil K reserves at many sites. Based on these data, we estimated that the amount of K cycled annually from the soil into rice plants is 7-10 million t in irrigated rice systems of Asia. About 1 million t of this total amount is removed with the harvested grain. Present recommendations for K addition in most intensive irrigated rice domains are insufficient to replace K removal. However, response to K can only be expected on soils with deficient supply capacity and where other nutrients, particularly N and P, are not limiting. Efficient K management for rice must therefore be based on the K input/output balance, the achievable yield target, and the effective K-supplying power of the soil.

publication date

  • 1996
  • 1996
  • 1996