SUGARCANE GUIDE OF FERTILIZATION
May 10, 2017

Growing sugarcane and getting high yield is a task that requires profound knowledge and expertise. Best fertilization regime should be based on leaf or soil analysis. Here are just some of the information for reference :

SUGARCANE

Sugarcane, or sugar cane, are several species of tall perennial true grasses of the genus Saccharum, tribe Andropogoneae, native to the warm temperate to tropical regions of South Asia and Melanesia, and used for sugar production. It has stout, jointed, fibrous stalks that are rich in the sugar sucrose, which accumulates in the stalk internodes. The plant is two to six meters (six to twenty feet) tall. All sugar cane species interbreed and the major commercial cultivars are complex hybrids. Sugarcane belongs to the grass family Poaceae, an economically important seed plant family that includes maize, wheat, rice, and sorghum, and many forage crops.

The world demand for sugar is the primary driver of sugarcane agriculture. Cane accounts for 80% of sugar produced; most of the rest is made from sugar beets. Sugarcane predominantly grows in the tropical and subtropical regions (sugar beets grow in colder temperate regions). Other than sugar, products derived from sugarcane include falernum, molasses, rum, cachaça (a traditional spirit from Brazil), bagasse, and ethanol. In some regions, people use sugarcane reeds to make pens, mats, screens, and thatch.

Sugarcane cultivation requires a tropical or temperate climate, with a minimum of 60 cm (24 in) of annual moisture. It is one of the most efficient photosynthesizers in the plant kingdom. It is a C4 plant, able to convert up to 1% of incident solar energy into biomass.

Sugarcane is a kind of plant which sensitive to the chloride ion, it is essential to use chloride-free fertilizers or caution to use chloride-based compound fertilizersWhen chloride ions concent in sensitive-chlorine plants are more, it will effect the sugar convert to starch then cause the starch content of roots and tubers reduce, so de-increased yield and quality. 

sugarcane 1.jpg

FERTILIZATION

Nitrogen - The recommended amount of nitrogen is based on 1 Kg N per ton of expected plant cane, and 1.25 - 1.50 Kg of N per ton of cane expected for ratoon crops. Nitrogen must be applied at an early stage of growth. For a 12 months crop, the entire amount should be applied within 3-4 months after planting. It is essential to complete N application at least 5 months before intended date of harvest.

Phosphate - All applied at planting according to soil analysis.

Potassium - In heavy soils, all the recommended amount of K is applied as base dressing. In lighter soils, it is preferable to apply one half of the total amount as base dressing and the rest 6 months later.Highest demand for K in sugar cane is between 4 – 2,5 months before harvest. 

Nutrients uptake curve of sugarcane.jpg

SUGGESTED FERTILIZERS

Granular fertilizers

NPK 15-15-15+7S Granular Sulfur-based Fertilizer

     Application period:  Before Pre-planting

     Fertilization method: Base dresssing in the tillage band

NPK 22-8-10, NPK 25-8-16,NPK 22-6-12, NPK 20-10-10 Granular Sulfur-based Fertilizer

     Application period:  3-4 applications within 3-4 months after planting

     Fertilization method: 5 to 10cm distance from root by broadcasting

Foliar fertilizers

NPK 10-6-42+TE, NPK 12-2-45+TE, NPK 12-3-43+TE  Nitrate-based Fertilizer

     Application period:  Young foliage (1st & 2nd year)

     Fertilization method:  Foliar by grand @concentration 2%@3-4 applications, 3-4 weeks intervals

                                          Foliar by airplane @concentration 10%@3-4 applications, 3-4 weeks intervals

     Application period:  Mature foliage (1st & 2nd year)

     Fertilization method: Foliar by airplane @concentration 10% (3Kg/30liters/hectare)@1-2 applications