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Effect of algicides on urea fertilizer efficiency in transplanted rice

I. Floodwater chemistry and biota

Abstract

The effects of the algicides terbutryn and copper sulfate on the potential for reducing the gaseous loss of NH3 from urea applied to rice were examined in experiments with 2 methods of N fertilizer management, 2 or 3 N rates, and 3 algicide treatments. The experiments were conducted during the 1986 dry and wet seasons in an experimental field at Pila, Laguna, Philippines.

Copper sulfate had little effect as an algicide at the rate used, but terbutryn immediately reduced algal growth. The populations of species resistant to terbutryn probably increased, but terbutryn had no long-term effect on the total number of colony-forming units of algae. There was some evidence that terbutryn reduced photodependent N2 fixation as estimated by acetylene reduction assay.

Terbutryn, when applied with urea 10 days after transplanting, reduced the maximum floodwater pH by 0.9 units or more for 7 d in the DS and by about 0.5 units for 8 d in the WS. Terbutryn increased the ammoniacal-N (AN) concentration in the floodwater 100% or more in the DS and 60% in the WS. The combined effect of terbutryn on the floodwater pH and AN concentration was reduced photodependent NH3 partial pressure (ρNH3), about 25% in the DS and 38% in the WS.

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Muirhead, W.A., De Datta, S.K., Roger, P.A. et al. Effect of algicides on urea fertilizer efficiency in transplanted rice. Fertilizer Research 21, 95–107 (1989). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01080534

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Key words

  • Terbutryn
  • copper sulfate
  • pH
  • acetylene reduction assay
  • algal enumeration
  • ammoniacal-N
  • NH3 volatilization
  • Oryza sativa L.