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RESEARCH / FUNCTIONING ADAPTIVE MANAGEMENT WATERSHED SITE AND NEW NITROGEN FERTILIZER RECOMMENDATION FRAMEWORK

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Functioning Adaptive Management Watershed Site and New Nitrogen Fertilizer Recommendation Framework

White, Sanders, and Ordonez are working to develop a functioning adaptive management watershed site and to validate a new nitrogen fertilizer recommendation framework for corn in on-farm experiments.

This team has identified an adaptive management field site in State College, PA. They installed groundwater monitoring wells, soil water samplers, and a network of soil moisture sensors at the site. They are collecting soil water samples. The team is planning to install a runoff collection system, so they can start obtaining data about overland flow at the site. They will continue collecting samples so they can build a robust data set for this experiment.

Each growing season, the team conducts a series of on-farm experiments on different soil types and with different cover crop management practices. Six different nitrogen rates are applied to the corn to develop a yield response curve to applied nitrogen. The results of the yield response curve, and measurements of plant biomass partitioning and N uptake will help the team refine and validate the new nitrogen fertilizer recommendation framework that credits N from cover crops and soil organic matter.

Experimental Nitrogen Recommendation Framework Tools

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Project Leader


Charlie White

Assistant Professor and Extension Specialist, Soil Fertility and Nutrient Management, Penn State

Link to bio

Project Team


Raziel A. Ordonez

Postdoc, Department of Plant Science, Penn State

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Zoelie Rivera-Ocasio

Graduate Assistant, Penn State

Zachary Sanders

Research Technician & PhD Candidate, Penn State

Link to bio