Optimizing nutrient management of wheat in Tunisia

IPNI-2014-TUN-2

29 Apr 2016

2015 Annual Interpretive Summary


This project was initiated in 2014 to develop a Nutrient Expert® (NE) tool for Tunisian farmers and extension specialists to implement appropriate nutrient management practices for wheat production in rainfed and irrigated areas. In the 2014/2015 cropping season, three omission nutrient trials were established in three regions of Tunisia: semi-arid rainfed area of Jdaida, favorable rainfed area of El Gnadil, and an arid area with supplemental irrigation in Chbika. Each experimental plot was planted with bread wheat (BW) and durum wheat (DW) under five nutrient treatments including an optimum treatment (OPT), OPT-N, OPT-P, OPT-K, and farmer fertilizer practice (FFP). The ranges of fertilizer applied in the OPT treatment from semi-arid to irrigated areas were 54 to 126 kg N/ha, 26 to 45 kg P2O5/ha, and 25 kg K2O/ha for BW and 87 to 186 kg N/ha, 45 to 68 kg P2O5/ha, and 25 kg K2O/ha for DW.

Results of this study showed that the highest grain yields of DW were obtained by the OPT treatment with 5.1, 5.7, and 5.2 t/ha at Jdaida, El Gnadil, and Chbika, respectively. A similar tendency was observed with BW, where the highest grain yields were obtained by the OPT treatment with 5.4, 5.9, and 5.4 at Jdaida, El Gnadil, and Chbika, respectively. On average, the omission of N, P and K reduced grain yield of BW by 26%, 11%, and 13%, respectively, and the grain yield of DW by 33%, 19%, and 6%. The study also showed that the OPT treatment produced 1.34 t/ha and 1.55 t/ha of additional grain yield than FFP for DW and BW, respectively.