IPI International Potash Institute
IPI International Potash Institute

Research Findings: e-ifc No. 46, September 2016

Ready to harvest sugar beet field at Layyah in Pakistan. Photo by A. Wakeel.

Sugar Beet Response to Potassium Fertilizer under Water Sufficient and Water Deficient Conditions

Mubarak, M.U.(1)**, M. Zahir(1), M. Gul(2), M. Farooq(3), and A. Wakeel(1)
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*Paper published in the Proceedings of the International Conference on “Soil Sustainability for Food Security”, 15-17 November 2015, Institute of Soil and Environmental Sciences, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Pakistan
(1)Institute of Soil and Environmental Sciences, University of Agriculture Faisalabad-38040, Pakistan.
(2)Department of Soil Science, Bahauddin Zakariya University, Multan, Pakistan
(3)Department of Agronomy, University of Agriculture Faisalabad-38040, Pakistan
**Corresponding author: umairmubarakuaf@gmail.com

Introduction

Sugar beet (Beta vulgaris L.) is an industrial crop, grown as a sugar crop contributing ~25% of total sugar production worldwide. In Pakistan, however, sugar is mostly extracted from sugarcane. Sugar beet has high sucrose content, even more than that in sugarcane; and sugar beet yield can be sustained, or even can be further increased by potassium (K) fertilization. In Pakistani soils K concentration is higher, because these soils are developed from mica minerals. However, its high concentration in soil K does not represent plant available K for sustainable plant growth. Due to strong binding within clay minerals, K is not released at required rate for the optimum plant growth. K increases root growth and improves drought resistance and plays a critical role in enzyme activation, osmoregulation, and charge balance in plants (Cakmak, 2005). This study was conducted to investigate the effect of K on the sugar beet yield.

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