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  • 1 Present address: Division of Agronomy, Indian Agricultural Research Institute New Delhi, India
  • 2 Department of Agronomy, Zhejiang Agricultural University Hangzhou, China
  • 3 Department of Agronomy, Zhejiang Agricultural University Hangzhou, China
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A field experiment was carried out to study the effect of K nutrition and genotypic variation on the dry matter (DM) accumulation, and the K concentration, accumulation, uptake and utilization efficiency in barley (Hordeum vulgare L.). Successive increases in potassium nutrition had a significant effect on the dry matter and K accumulation either in the total or in various plant parts of barley at the tillering, stem elongation, heading and maturity growth stages. K nutrition also led to significantly higher grain yield with each unit K application than without K application. The yield increase due to K application was mainly due to the improvement in spike development from tillers. Dry matter and K accumulation in various plant parts varied significantly between genotypes at the main growth stages. Among the various plant parts, the stem contained the highest K concentration, had the highest K accumulation at maturity and changed considerably with the K level, while other plant parts remained relatively unchanged. Among the eleven genotypes, genotype 98-6 had the highest grain yield and the K use efficiency of this genotype was 10.4 kg grain per kg K applied. It could thus be used as a breeding line to breed barley varieties for higher productivity under rainfed conditions with low available soil potassium.

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