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Prediction of wheat response to an application of phosphorus under field conditions using diffusive gradients in thin-films (DGT) and extraction methods

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

  • Sean Mason
  • Ann McNeill
  • Mike J. McLaughlin
  • Hao Zhang
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>12/2010
<mark>Journal</mark>Plant and Soil
Issue number1-2
Number of pages16
Pages (from-to)243-258
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English


The ability of the Diffusive Gradients in Thin Films (DGT) technique and two other established testing methods (Colwell, resin) to predict wheat responsiveness to applied P from 35 field trials across southern Australia was investigated. Regression analysis of relative early dry matter production and grain yield responses demonstrated that the DGT method predicted plant responsiveness to applied P more accurately than Colwell P and resin P at sites where maximum yields were reached with P rates used (20 out of 35). The measured concentration in soils at the DGT surface, C-DGT, explained 74% of the variation in response for both early dry matter and grain, compared to 7% for early dry matter and 35% for grain using the resin P method. No significant relationships could be obtained for Colwell P although modifying the Colwell test data using Phosphorus Buffering Index resulted in a correct response prediction for 11 of the 20 field sites compared to 18 for DGT and 14 for resin P. These observations suggest that the DGT technique can assess plant available P in soils with significantly greater accuracy than traditional soil P testing methods. The critical P threshold, expressed as C-DGT, was 255 mu g L-1 for early dry matter and 66 mu g L-1 for grain.