Interactive Effects of Nitrogen and Potassium Fertilization on Oxalate Content in Napiergrass (Pennisetum purpureum)

  • Rahman, M.M. (Faculty of Agriculture, University of Miyazaki) ;
  • Ishii, Y. (Faculty of Agriculture, University of Miyazaki) ;
  • Niimi, M. (Faculty of Agriculture, University of Miyazaki) ;
  • Kawamura, O. (Faculty of Agriculture, University of Miyazaki)
  • Received : 2009.10.22
  • Accepted : 2009.12.10
  • Published : 2010.06.01


Ingestion of forage containing a large quantity of soluble oxalate can result in calcium deficiency and even death of livestock. Fertilization is one of the most practical and effective ways to improve yield and nutritional quality of forage. An experiment was conducted to determine the effects of nitrogen (N) fertilization (150, 300 and 600 kg/ha) across varying levels (150, 300 and 600 kg/ha) of potassium (K) on oxalate accumulation in napiergrass (Pennisetum purpureum). Application of N at 300 kg/ha produced higher dry matter yield than at 150 or 600 kg/ha, while K fertilization had no effect on yield. In general, N fertilization did not affect the soluble and total oxalate contents, but slightly affected the insoluble oxalate content. Soluble oxalate content showed an increasing trend and insoluble oxalate content showed a decreasing trend with increasing K level, but total oxalate content remained relatively constant. There were significant interactions between N and K fertilization for the content of soluble and insoluble oxalate fractions. The greatest increase in soluble oxalate content with N level at 300 kg/ha was found at the high level (600 kg/ha) of K application. The greatest increase in insoluble oxalate content with N level at 600 kg/ha was found at the low level (150 kg/ha) of K application. These results indicated the possibility of controlling the content of soluble and insoluble oxalate fractions in forage by fertilization.


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