Nitrogen and Sulfur Fertilization for Improved Bread Wheat Quality in Humid Environments.
Wade Thomason1, Steve Phillips1, Tom Pridgen1, Jason Kenner1, Carl Griffey1, and Brad Seabourn2. (1) Virginia Tech, 422 Smyth Hall, 422 Smyth Hall, Blacksburg, VA 24061, United States of America, (2) USDA-ARS, GMPRC, 1515 College Avenue, Manhattan, KS 66502
A large proportion of the wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) milled and utilized by bakeries in the eastern U.S. is hard red winter wheat (HRWW). Potential for producing this higher-value commodity in the eastern U.S. is dependent on availability of adapted HRWW cultivars that are competitive with soft red winter wheat (SRWW) cultivars and implementation of management systems to enhance end-use quality. The effects of late-season nitrogen (N) (0 to 45 kg N/ha) and sulfur (S) (0 and 34 kg S/ha) applied at GS30 on grain, flour, and milling and bread baking quality parameters of three diverse wheat cultivars ‘Soissons, ‘Heyne’, and ‘Renwood 3260’ were evaluated in 2 to 5 environments. Application of S and late-season N had little effect on grain yield; but N consistently increased grain and flour protein as well as bread loaf volume. Test location and cultivar influenced the magnitude and significance of response to N and S. While S alone did not have a significant effect on grain protein, S availability was critical in obtaining increased grain protein. Bread baking quality of HRWW cultivars produced in the eastern U.S. can be improved via the implementation of nutrient management systems that include late-season application of 34 to 45 kg N/ha and S when limiting.