Effect of boron and nitrogen fertilization on cowpea nodulation, mineral nutrition and grain yield


A two year field study on the effect of nitrogen N and boron B fertilization on the nodulation, mineral nutrition and grain yield of cowpea was carried out in the Nigerian savanna where fairly widespread B deficiency has been reported. Treatments consisted of four levels of N (0, 15, 30 and 60 kg/ha in 1986 and 0, 15, 30 and 45 kg/ha in 1987) and three levels of B (0, 1.5 and 3.0 kg/ha). Cowpea responded positively though nonsignificantly to N fertilization up to 30 kg N/ha. However, N had no effect on the N, P, K and B content of index leaves. Boron application consistently reduced grain yield. Like N, applied B had no effect on the N, P, K concentration of index leaves but increased B concentration highly significantly (P < 0.001). The critical level of B toxicity in index leaves was approximated to be 21pm under field condition. Application of N and B depressed nodulation.

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Correspondence to J. O. Agbenin.

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Agbenin, J.O., Lombin, G. & Owonubi, J.J. Effect of boron and nitrogen fertilization on cowpea nodulation, mineral nutrition and grain yield. Fertilizer Research 22, 71–78 (1990). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01116181

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Key words

  • Boron
  • critical level
  • grain
  • nitrogen
  • nodulation
  • nutrition
  • toxicity