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Survey examines the adoption of perceived best management practices for almond nutrition

  • Author(s): Lopus, Sara E.
  • Santibanez, Maria Paz
  • Beede, Robert H.
  • Duncan, Roger A.
  • Edstrom, John
  • Niederholzer, Franz J. A.
  • Trexler, Cary J.
  • Brown, Patrick H
  • et al.
Abstract

Fertilizer use in California agriculture has been under recent scrutiny regarding its impacts on air, surface water and groundwater quality. In June 2007, we surveyed almond growers to assess their plant nutrition practices, identify opportunities for improvement, and target research and extension needs. The majority of respondents, particularly those with large almond acreages, used fertigation to apply nitrogen; applied nitrogen coincident with periods of maximal plant demand; and collected annual tissue samples for analysis. While the survey results suggested broad compliance with the best-available management practices and are likely to indicate good nutrient-use efficiency, they also suggested that growers are uncertain about current practices to monitor orchard nutrient status and would value additional information to enable greater precision in fertilization rates and timing.

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