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Journal of Integrative Agriculture  2023, Vol. 22 Issue (2): 417-433    DOI: 10.1016/j.jia.2022.08.074
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Nitrogen management improves lodging resistance and production in maize (Zea mays L.) at a high plant density

Irshad AHMAD1, 2*, Maksat BATYRBEK1*, Khushnuma IKRAM3, Shakeel AHMAD1, Muhammad KAMRAN2, Misbah3, Raham Sher KHAN3, HOU Fu-jiang2, HAN Qing-fang1

1 Key Laboratory of Crop Physio-Ecology and Tillage Science in North-Western Loess Plateau, Ministry of Agriculture/College of Agronomy, Northwest A&F University, Yangling 712100, P.R.China

2 State Key Laboratory of Herbage Improvement and Grassland Agro-Ecosystems/Key Laboratory of Grassland Livestock Industry Innovation, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs/Engineering Research Center of Grassland Industry, Ministry of Education/College of Pastoral Agriculture Science and Technology, Lanzhou University, Lanzhou 730020, P.R.China

3 Department of Biotechnology, Abdul Wali Khan University Mardan, Mardan 23200, Pakistan

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摘要  在世界范围内,玉米倒伏导致产量损失严重。为探究氮肥管理对高密植下夏玉米产量和倒伏能力的影响,我们设置了二因素的大田试验。因素一为施氮量:传统施氮R300 kg ha-1)、优化施氮O225 kg ha-1因素二为氮肥分施模式:N1,50%氮肥为底肥+50%氮肥在玉米十叶期追肥N2,100%肥为底肥N3,40%氮肥为底肥+40%氮肥在玉米十叶期追肥+20%氮肥在抽穗期追肥N4,30%氮肥为底肥+30%氮肥玉米十叶期追肥+20%氮肥在抽穗期追肥+20%氮肥在吐丝期。通过测定玉米茎秆性状、木质素含量、根系生长、倒伏率和密植产量,结果发现,优化施氮(225 kg ha-1)显著降低了玉米节间长度、株高、穗高、重心高度和倒伏率,显著提高了玉米的节间直径、填充度、茎秆机械强度、根系生长和木质素含量。分四次施用氮肥(N4)显著改善了茎秆形态特征、茎秆的机械强度、木质素含量、促进了根系生长,减少节间长度、株高、穗高、植株重心高度和倒伏率同时,结果显示玉米茎秆的节间直径、填充度、秆的机械强度、木质素含量、根数量、根系直径、根体积、根干重、玉米产量与株高、穗高、重心高、节间长度和倒伏率呈显著负相关。综上所述,优化施氮量配合氮肥4次分施(ON4)处理通过改善茎秆形态特征、茎秆机械强度、木质素含量、根系生长,显著降低了倒伏率,并提高高密植下的玉米产量


Lodging in maize leads to yield losses worldwide.  In this study, we determined the effects of traditional and optimized nitrogen management strategies on culm morphological characteristics, culm mechanical strength, lignin content, root growth, lodging percentage and production in maize at a high plant density.  We compared a traditional nitrogen (N) application rate of 300 kg ha–1 (R) and an optimized N application rate of 225 kg ha–1 (O) under four N application modes: 50% of N applied at sowing and 50% at the 10th-leaf stage (N1); 100% of N applied at sowing (N2); 40% of N applied at sowing, 40% at the 10th-leaf stage and 20% at tasseling stage (N3); and 30% of N applied at sowing, 30% at the 10th-leaf stage, 20% at the tasseling stage, and 20% at the silking stage (N4).  The optimized N rate (225 kg ha–1) significantly reduced internode lengths, plant height, ear height, center of gravity height and lodging percentage.  The optimized N rate significantly increased internode diameters, filling degrees, culm mechanical strength, root growth and lignin content.  The application of N in four split doses (N4) significantly improved culm morphological characteristics, culm mechanical strength, lignin content, and root growth, while it reduced internode lengths, plant height, ear height, center of gravity height and lodging percentage.  Internode diameters, filling degrees, culm mechanical strength, lignin content, number and diameter of brace roots, root volume, root dry weight, bleeding safe and grain yield were significantly negatively correlated with plant height, ear height, center of gravity height, internode lengths and lodging percentage.  In conclusion, treatment ON4 significantly reduced the lodging percentage by improving the culm morphological characteristics, culm mechanical strength, lignin content, and root growth, so it improved the production of the maize crop at a high plant density.

Keywords:  dense plant density       lodging resistance       maize       nitrogen rates       nitrogen application modes  
Received: 01 November 2021   Accepted: 24 January 2022

This work was supported by projects funded by China Postdoctoral Science Foundation (2019M663837 and 2021M701521), the National High-Tech Research and Development Programs of China (2013AA102902), and the special fund for Agro-scientific Research in the Public Interest, China (201303104).

About author:  Correspondence Irshad Ahmad, E-mail:; HOU Fu-jiang, E-mail:; HAN Qing-fang, E-mail: * These authors contributed equally to this study.

Cite this article: 

Irshad AHMAD, Maksat BATYRBEK, Khushnuma IKRAM, Shakeel AHMAD, Muhammad KAMRAN, Misbah, Raham Sher KHAN, HOU Fu-jiang, HAN Qing-fang. 2023.

Nitrogen management improves lodging resistance and production in maize (Zea mays L.) at a high plant density . Journal of Integrative Agriculture, 22(2): 417-433.

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