Magnesium nutrition of apple trees. III. Comparison of different methods of magnesium fertilization

A. Sadowski, E. Jadczuk, J. Pękacki, K. Ścibisz


In the period 1969-1973 two experiments were performed in young orchards in Central Poland: a four-year experiment at Julianów, on sandy loamy soil on underlying sand and one-year experiment at Kośmin, on sandy loam soil on clay loam. At Kosmin, in spite of a high Mg content in the subsoil, Mg deficiency symptoms appeared, because of shallow rooting owing to poor aeration. In both experiments, foliar sprays with epsomite were less effective than fertilization to the soil; at Kośmin even eight sprays were less effective than soil dressings. Mg losses from a sandy soil due to leaching were high, particularly where sand was present in the whole profile; under these conditions the least losses of Mg were from split doses of epsomite (Mg3x120). Single doses of epsomite were the most effective in increasing leaf Mg content, reducing Mg deficiency symptoms and promoting growth of trees in the first year after application; in the later years split doses of epsomite and a single initial dose of magnesium lime were more effective. Effects of Mg fertilization on growth and yields of apples were rather slight, when K fertilizer doses were low. No effect of Mg fertilization upon fruit drop and fruit quality was found. Preliminary recommendations for practice are given.

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