Fois, Simonetta and Motzo, Rosella and Giunta, Francesco (2009) The Effect of nitrogenous fertiliser application on leaf traits in durum wheat in relation to grain yield and development. Field Crops Research, Vol. 110 (1), p. 69-75. ISSN 0378-4290. Article.
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Nitrogen (N) fertilisation boosts the grain yield of wheat through its influence on yield components, phenology and leaf traits. Both crop growth and senescence are dependent on N supply, as are the number of kernels set per unit area and per ear, and the mean kernel size. A two-season trial of four semi-dwarf durum wheat cultivars, grown at two levels of N, was used to illustrate the effects of N on canopy temperature, leaf resistance and flag leaf senescence pattern under irrigated conditions in a Mediterranean climate, and to explore the consequences of these effects on the crop phenology, its yield and its yield components. The well-fertilised crop developed a larger leaf area index at anthesis and a lower leaf resistance, thus generating a lower canopy temperature and delayed anthesis. Its grain fill duration was shorter, in spite of its lower canopy temperature, presumably because the increased N availability resulted in the development of a stronger sink (more kernels per unit area and per ear), which was associated with earlier senescence, thereby shortening the duration of grain fill, and led to reduced kernel weight.
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