There has been recent interest in camelina (Camelina sativa L.) because of its potential as a low-cost feedstock for biofuels and hence the need to optimize its production. We hypothesized that nutrient requirements under dryland environments with low and highly variable precipitation will depend on year and timely seeding. This study aimed at determining (a) the effects of nitrogen (N) and sulfur (S) application on the growth, yield, seed protein and oil content of spring-type camelina for the environmental conditions of northern Wyoming, USA, and (b) N and S requirement when camelina is seeded late. Four N levels (0, 28, 56, and 112kgha-1) and two S levels (0 and 25kgha-1) were studied. Sulfur had no significant effects on the measured responses. For trials established on May 13, 2013 and April 11, 2014, there was a general increase in plant height, seed yield, protein content, and protein yield with N application. Nitrogen application resulted in 31% seed yield increase but decreased oil content by 2.7% relative to the unfertilized control. As such, biodiesel that could be produced increased with N application. When seeded in May 24, 2014, N application caused a significant increase in the plant height, seed yield, harvest index and estimated biodiesel, but had no effect on the oil and protein content. The application of N showed a quadratic response to seed yield in all the trials. In general, applying N rate beyond 56kgha-1 did not result in significant increase in seed yield for trials established in May 13, 2013 and April 11, 2014, and 28kgha-1 for the trial established in May 24, 2014.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The study was supported by the U. S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture and the Western Sustainable Agricultural Research and Education Program . The authors thank Dr. Kenneth Kephart, Dr. Kent McVay Dr. Qasim Khan, and Ms. Kelli Maxwell of Montana State University, Southern Agricultural Research Center, Huntley, MT for helping us with the FT-NIR analysis. We also acknowledge the field crew of the Sheridan Research & Extension Center (ShREC) at the University of Wyoming.
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- Camelina sativa
- Oil content
- Protein content
- Seed yield