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Sep 2, 2011

Potato Europe 2011: Drought stress and fertiliser use – a field demonstration of K+S KALI GmbH

Since a few years and especially in the ongoing year, changes in the regional weather conditions challenged farmers in many parts of Europe. Longer periods without precipitation forced farmers to maintain yields under unfavourable weather conditions. Therefore, all available measures in crop production need to be utilised to optimize the use of the limited resource water. Besides conservation tillage, the selection of adequate varieties, and good crop establishment, fertilisation plays a major role to increase water use efficiency. Especially potassium (K) and magnesium (Mg) have an important influence on water stress resistance of plants.

 

K is involved in the opening and closure of the stomata, osmotic adjustment of the turgor etc., and thus essential to maintain the plant water status.

 

Mg is transported by water to the roots. If Mg soil water concentration is low and dry conditions are limiting the transport of Mg to the roots, the lack of Mg inhibits the transport of assimilates within the plant. Thus root growth and later on tuber formation is reduced.

 

To demonstrate the positive effects of potassium and magnesium at Potato Europe 2011, September 7-8, 2011, K+S KALI GmbH has set up demonstration plots where water stress was induced on the potato crop. Fertilised and unfertilised potatoes were exposed to sever drought and compared to regular rain fed conditions.

Based on a worldwide network of field trials K+S KALI GmbH identifies future challenges in plant nutrition and develops fertilisation strategies for crop production under changing environmental conditions. K+S KALI GmbH will be present on the Potato Europe 2011 and is looking forward to your visit.

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