The cow-calf (Bos taurus) industry in subtropical United States and other parts of the world that depends almost totally on grazed pastures is facing several production constraints like changing climatic conditions and increasing cost of fertilizers, especially nitrogen (N). Particularly little is known about the response of forage species to the combined effect of water-logging and the addition of N. A two-year greenhouse study was conducted in 2008 and 2009 to determine i) the effect of flooding duration on N recovery and agronomic efficiency of bahiagrass (Paspalum notatum Fluegge) compared with two flooding tolerant forages, limpograss (Hemarthria altissima Poir), and maidencane (Panicum hematomon Schult) and ii) if N fertilization could mitigate the negative effect of flooding. Nitrogen recovery and agronomic efficiency varied significantly (P ≤ 0.001) among forage species. Averaged across levels of N, N recovery of bahiagrass and limpograss was reduced by about 41% and 56%, respectively after 84 d of continued flooding while N recovery of maidencane was slightly increase by about 5% between 0 and 84 d of flooding. Agronomic efficiencies of bahiagrass (41% to 26%) and limpograss (44% to 31%) were reduced by flooding while agronomic efficiency of maidencane was increased from 24% (no flooding) to 46% at 84 d of continued flooding. However, N recovery and agronomic efficiency of three forage species was positively affected by N fertilization. The overall N recovery of bahiagrass, limpograss, and maidencane ranged from 44% to 59%. Nitrogen fertilization could improve N recovery and agronomic efficiency of forage species under waterlogged condition.
Cite this paper
Sigua, G. , Williams, M. , Chase Jr., C. , Grabowski, J. and Kongchum, M. (2013) Nitrogen recovery and agronomic efficiency of forages with nitrogen fertilization under flooded condition. Agricultural Sciences, 4, 138-148. doi: 10.4236/as.2013.43021.
 Wortmann, C.S., Tarkalson, D.D., Shapiro, C.A., Dobermann, A.R., Ferguson, R.B., Hergert, G.W. and Walters, D. (2011) Nitrogen use efficiency of irrigated corn for three cropping systems in Nebraska. Agronomy Journal, 103, 76-84. doi:10.2134/agronj2010.0189
 Drew, M.C., Sisworo, E.J. and Saker, L.R. (1979) Alleviation of waterlogging damage to young barley plants by application of nitrate and synthetic cytokinin. New. Phytologist, 82, 315-329.
 Hodgson, A.S. (1982) The effects of duration, timing and chemical amelioration of short-term waterlogging during furrow irrigation of cotton in cracking gray soil. Australian Journal of Agricultural Research, 33, 1019-1028.
 Jackson, M.B. and Drew M.C. (1984) Effects of flooding on growth and metabolism of herbaceous plants. In: Kozlowski, E.T., Ed., Flooding and Plant Growth, Academic Press, Orlando, 47-128.
 Naidoo, G. and Mundree, S.G. (1993) Relationship between morphological and physiological responses to water-logging and salinity in Sporobolus virginicus (L). Oecologia, 93, 360-366. doi:10.1007/BF00317879
 Rubio, G., Casasola, G. and Lavado, R.S. (1995) Adaptation and biomass production of two grasses in response to waterlogging and soil nutrient enrichment. Oecologia, 102, 102-105.
 Roberts, T.L. (2008) Improving nutrient use efficiency. Turkish Journal of Agriculture and Forestry, 32, 177-182.
 Raun, W.R. and Johnson, G.V. (1999) Improving nitrogen use efficiency for cereal production. Agronomy Journal, 91, 357-363.
 Mosier, A.R., Syers, K.K. and Freney, J.R. (2004) Agriculture and the nitrogen cycle. Assessing the impacts of fertilizer use on food production and the environment. Scope-65. Island Press, London, 150.
 Ladha, J.K., Pathak, H., Krupnik, T.J., Six, J. and van Kessel, C. (2005) Efficiency of fertilizer nitrogen in cereal production: Retrospect and prospects. Advances in Agronomy, 87, 85-156.
 Cassman, K.G., Dobermann, A. and Walters, D.T. (2002) Agroecosystems, nitrogen use efficiency and nitrogen management. AMBIO, 31, 132-140.
 Zemenchik, R.A. and Albrecht, K.A. (2002) Nitrogen use efficiency and apparent nitrogen recovery of Kentucky bluegrass, smooth bromegrass, and orchardgrass. Agronomy Journal, 94, 421-428. doi:10.2134/agronj2002.0421
 Wright, M.J. and Davidson, K.L. (1964) Nitrate accumulation in crops and nitrate poisoning in animals. Advances in Agronomy, 16, 197-247.
 Donahue, S.J., Rhykerd, C.L., Holt, D.A. and Noller, C.H. (1965) Influence of N fertilization and N carryover on yield and N concentration of Dactylis glomerata L. Agronomy Journal, 57, 671-674.
 Long, F.N.J., Kennedy, S.J. and Gracey, H.I. (1991) Effect of fertilizer nitrogen rate and timing on herbage production and nitrogen use efficiency for first-cut silage. Grass and Forage Science, 46, 231-237.
 Drake, M., Colby, W.G. and Bredakis, E. (1963) Yield of orchardgrass as influenced by rates of nitrogen and harvest management. Agronomy Journal, 55, 361-362.
 George, J.R., Rhykerd, C.L., Noller, C.H., Dillon, J.E. and Burns, J.C. (1973) Effect of N fertilization on dry matter, total-N, N recovery, and nitrate-N concentration of three cool-season forage grass species. Agronomy Journal, 65, 211-216.
 Stout, W.L. and Jung, G.A. (1992) Influence of soil environment on biomass and nitrogen accumulation rates of orchardgrass. Agronomy Journal, 84, 1011-1019.
 Guillard, K., Griffin, G.F., Allinson, D.W., Rafey, M.M., Yamartino, W.R. and Pietrzyk, S.W. (1995) Nitrogen utilization of selected cropping systems in the US Northeast: Dry matter yield, N uptake, apparent N recover, and N use efficiency. Agronomy Journal, 87, 193-199.
 Shalhevet, J. and Zwerman, P.J. (1962) Nitrogen response of corn under variable conditions of drainage—A lysimeter study. Soil Science, 72, 93-100.
 Lal, R. and Taylor, G.S. (1969) Drainage and nutrient effects in a field lysimeter study: I. Corn yield and soil conditions. Soil Science Society of America Journal, 33, 937- 944. doi:10.2136/sssaj1969.03615995003300060039x
 Spek, L.Y. (1981) Influence of nitrate and aeration on growth and chemical composition of Zea mays L. Plant and Soil, 63, 115-120. doi:10.1007/BF02374266
 Meyer, W.S., Barrs, H.D., Mosier, A.R. and Schaefer, N.L. (1987) Response of maize to three short-term periods of waterlogging at high and low nitrogen levels on undisturbed and repacked soil. Irrigation Science, 8, 257-272.
 Gallagher, R.N., Weldon, G.O. and Boswell, F.C. (1976) A semiautomated procedure for total nitrogen in plant and soil samples. Soil Science Society of America Journal, 40, 887-889.
 Patrick, W.H., Gambrell, R.P. and Faulkner, S.P. (1996) Redox measurements of soils. pp. 1255-1273. In: Sparks, D.L., et al., Eds., Methods of Soil Analysis. Part 3: Chemical Methods, Soil Science Society of America, Inc. Madison, 1390.
 SAS Institute (2000) SAS/STAT user’s guide. Release 6.03. SAS Institute, Cary, 494 p.
 Atkinson, D. (1973) Some general effects of phosphorus deficiency on growth and development. New Phytologist, 72, 101-111. doi:10.1111/j.1469-8137.1973.tb02014.x
 Aerts, R., Boot, R.G.A. and van der Aart, P.J.M. (1991) The relation between above- and belowground biomass allocation patterns and competitive ability. Oecologia, 87, 551-559. doi:10.1007/BF00320419
 Crawford, R.M. (1993) Plant survival without oxygen. Biologist, 40, 110-114.
 Singh, R. and Ghildyal, B.P. (1980) Soil submergence effects on nutrient uptake, growth, and yield of five corn cultivars. Agronomy Journal, 72, 737-741.
 Voesenek, L.A.C.J., Colmer, T.D., Pierik, R., Millenaar, F.F. and Peeters, A.J.M. (2006) How plants cope with complete submergence. New Phytologist, 170, 213-226.
 Crawford, R.M., Studer, C. and Studer, K. (1989) Deprivation indifference as a survival strategy in competition: Advantages and disadvantages of anoxia tolerance in wetland vegetation. Flora, 182, 189-201.
 Insausti, P., Chaneton, E.J. and Soriano, A. (1999) Flood- ing reverted grazing effects on plant community structure in mesocosms of lowland grassland. Oikos, 84, 266-276.
 Loreti, J. and Oesterheld, M. (1996) Intraspecific variation in the resistance to flooding and drought in populations of Paspalum dilitatum from different topographic positions. Oecologia, 92, 279-284.
 Laan, P., M. Tosserama, M., Blom, C.W.P.M. and Veen, B.W. (1990) Internal oxygen transport in Rumex species and its significance for respiration under hypoxic conditions. Plant and Soil, 122, 39-46.
 Van der Samn, A.J.M., Voesenek, L.A.C.J., Blom, C.W.P.M., Harren F.J.M. and Reuss, J. (1991) The role of ethylene in shoot elongation with respect to survival and seed output of flooded Rumes maritimus L. plants. Functional Ecology, 5, 304-313. doi:10.2307/2389269
 Kozlowski, T.T. (1984) Plant responses to flooding. Bio-Science, 34, 162-167. doi:10.2307/1309751
 Luttge, V. and Pitman, M.G. (1976) Transport and energy. Encyclopedia of Plant Physiology: New Series, 2A, 251- 259.
 Hart, R.H., Burton, G.W. and Jackson, J.E. (1965) Seasonal variation in chemical composition and yield of Coastal bermudagrass as affected by nitrogen fertilization schedule. Agronomy Journal, 57, 381-385.
 Mathias, E.L., Bennett, O.L. and Lundberg, P.E. (1973) Effect of rates of nitrogen on yield, nitrogen use, and winter survival of Midland bermudagrass (Cynodon dactylon, L) in Appalachia. Agronomy Journal, 65, 67-68.
 Horn, F.P. and Taliaferro, C.M. (1974) Yield, composition, and IVDMD of four bermudagrass. Journal of Animal Science, 38, 224.
 Barth, K.M., McLaren, J.B., Fribourg, H.A. and Carver, L.A. (1982) Crude protein content of forage consumed by steers grazing nitrogen-fertilized. Bermuda Grass and Orchard Grass-Ladino Clover Pastures, 50.
 Chen, H., Qualls, R.G. and Miller, G.C. (2002) Adaptive response of Lepidium latifolium to soil flooding: Biomass allocation, adventitious rooting, arenchyma formation and ethylene production. Environmental and Experimental Botany, 48, 119-128.
 Chapin, F.S. (1980) The mineral nutrition of wild plants. Annual Reviews of Ecology and Systematics, 11, 233-260.
 Sigua, G.C. and Hudnall, W.H. (1992) Nitrogen and gypsum: Management tools for revegetation and productivity improvement of brackish marsh in southwest Louisiana. Communications in Soil Science and Plant Analysis, 23, 283-299. doi:10.1080/00103629209368588
 Aulahk, M.S. and Singh, B. (1997) Nitrogen losses and fertilizer N use efficiency in irrigated porous soils. Nutrient Cycling in Agroecosystems, 47, 197-212.
 Wiljler, J. and Delwiche, C.C. (1954) Investigations on the denitrifying processes in soil. Plant and Soil, 5, 155- 169. doi:10.1007/BF01343848
 Russel, E.W. (1961) Soil conditions and plant growth. 9th Edition, Longmans, Green, London.
 Patrick, W.H. and Wyatt, R. (1964) Soil nitrogen loss as a result of alternate submergence and drying. Soil Science Society of America Journal, 28, 647-653.
 MacRae, I.C., Ancajas, R.R. and Salandanan, S. (1967) The fate of nitrate nitrogen in some tropical soils following submergence. Soil Science, 105, 327-334.
 Tusneem, M.E. and Patrick Jr., W.H. (1971) Nitrogen transformations in waterlogged soil. Louisiana State University Agricultural Experiment Bulletin, 657, 75.
 Sigua, G.C., Williams, M.J., Grabowski, J., Chase, C. and Kongchum, M. (2012) Effect of flooding duration and nitrogen fertilization on yield and protein content of three forage species. Agronomy Journal, 104, 791-798.