Large Urea Granules for Broadcast Application for No-till Cropping in Alberta Spring Wheat

Large and regular sized urea applied with and without urease and nitrification inhibitors, surface applied in fall or spring under no-till cropping.


Earlier research in Alberta and North Dakota showed that using larger granules of urea compared to regular sized ag-grade urea was a means of increasing crop yield and reducing the potential for denitrification losses by slowing down nitrification of urea nitrogen (N) (Nyborg and Malhi 1979, and Goos and Johnson 1993). Read more

Year of initiation:2011
Year of completion:2013

Interpretive Summary

It is generally accepted in the Canadian prairies that the use of so called “double-shoot” air-drill planting equipment capable of planting and side-banding fertilizer in one field operation is the most effective way to apply N fertilizer. Granular urea is the most widely used N fertilizer in this type of operation. The urea is sideband placed (1. 5 in. to the side and 1. 5 in. deeper) than the bottom of the seed furrow.

This summary reports the second of the planned three years of research. The growing season was more moist (234 mm compared to a long-term average of 198 mm) and slightly warmer (1,442 heat units, 30% more than average cool season crop heat units of 1,400). Unfortunately, the more moist and warm season resulted in greater than normal mineralization of N from soil organic matter and there was no yield response to added N fertilizer.

The field work at this experiment progressed very well, all the fall N fertilizer broadcast applications (18-Oct-2010) and the spring broadcast applications (20-Mar-2011) were completed as planned. The crop was planted on 20-May-2011, after some delays because of cool wet weather. The crop year 2011 was an excellent growth year with 8. 8 in.

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Updates & Reports


Project Description

Project Leader

Audrey Bamber, Chinook Applied Research Assn

Project Cooperators

Dick Puurveen
Ross McKenzie
Chengci Chen

IPNI Staff

T. Jensen


Americas \ Northern America \ CAN \ Alberta


4r place, 4r source, 4r time, best management practices, nutrient management


Nitrogen (N)