Dry Edible Beans: Fertility Management

 

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Pub 811: Agronomy Guide > Dry Edible Beans > Fertility Management

Order OMAFRA Publication 811: Agronomy Guide for Field Crops

Nitrogen

Nitrogen fertilizers are not usually necessary for dry edible beans. However, where phosphate fertilizers are banded, a small amount of nitrogen (10 kg/ha or 9 lb/acre) may improve the availability of the phosphate. Where edible bean yields have been low due to bronzing or root rots, apply up to 100 kg/ha (90 lb/acre) of nitrogen before planting. Under these conditions, nitrogen will increase yield but will not cure the bronzing or the root rot. Seed size was found to increase slightly by the application of nitrogen. Nitrogen application potentially can delay maturity, particularly following high legume sod or where manure is applied.

Table 5-5. Phosphate and Potash Recommendations for Dry Edible Beans
Sodium Bicarbonate Phosphorus Soil Test (ppm) Rating1 Phosphate (P2O5)
Required
kg/ha
Ammonium Acetate Potassium Soil Test (ppm) Rating1 Potash (K2O) Required
kg/ha
0-3
HR

80

0-15
HR
120
4-5
60
16-30
110
6-7
50
31-45
90
8-9
40
46-60
80
10-12
MR
30
61-80
MR
60
13-15
20
81-100
40
16-25
LR
0
101-120
30
26-60
RR
0
121-150
LR
0
61+
NR2
0
151-250
NR2
0
  
251+
NR2
0
100 kg/ha = 90 lb/acre

1 HR, MR, LR, RR and NR denote, respectively, high, medium, low, rare and no probabilities of profitable crop response to applied nutrient. Profitable response to applied nutrients occurs when the increase in crop value, from increased yield or quality, is greater than the cost of the applied nutrient.
2 There is no expected agronomic response from the additional application of nutrients, and there is the potential for additional application of the nutrient (commercial fertilizer and/or manure) to reduce crop yield and/or quality. For example, additional phosphorus application to a soil testing more than 60 ppm of phosphorus could induce a zinc deficiency on soils low in zinc and may also increase the risk of phosphorus movement to surfacewater, while additional potash application to a field already testing more than 250 ppm of potassium could induce magnesium deficiency on soils low in magnesium.


Phosphate and Potash

Phosphate and potash recommendations for dry edible beans are presented in Table 5-5, Phosphate and Potash Recommendations for Dry Edible Beans Based on OMAFRA-Accredited Soil Tests. For information on the use of this table or if an OMAFRA-accredited soil test is unavailable, see Fertilizer Recommendations.

Methods of Application

To avoid seed burn, do not place fertilizer in contact with the seed. The fertilizer may be broadcast and plowed down, worked in before planting or applied through a planter that has a separate attachment for fertilizer placement.

Plant Analysis

For dry edible beans, sampling the top fully developed leaf (three leaflets plus stem) at first flowering is recommended. See Table 5-6, Interpretation of Plant Analysis for Dry Edible Beans, opposite page. Sample plants suspected of nutrient deficiency as soon as the problem appears. If sampling at other than the recommended time, collect samples from both healthy and injured areas so comparisons can be made correctly. Take a soil sample from the same area and at the same time as a plant sample. Values in Table 5-6 apply to the top fully developed leaf (three leaflets plus stem) at first flowering.

Micronutrients

Manganese

Manganese deficiency in dry edible beans has been diagnosed occasionally in Ontario. This problem is more likely to occur on muck soils or on very sandy soils. Plants with manganese deficiency have pale green-to-white upper leaves. The veins of affected leaves will remain green. Correct the deficiency as soon as it is detected by spraying the foliage with 2 kg/ha of actual manganese (1.8 lb/acre) from manganese sulphate (8 kg/ha or 7.1 lb/acre of manganese sulphate) in 200 L (53 gal) of water. Use of a "spreader-sticker" is recommended.

In good growing conditions, the affected leaves should green up in 4-5 days. Chelated manganese products are equally effective if applying the same amount of manganese, but they are about 10 times the price of manganese sulphate. Low rates of chelated manganese are not effective and may make the manganese deficiency worse.

In general, beans will give a profitable response to manganese in the parts of the field where manganese deficiency is showing. There is no benefit to applying manganese to beans without deficiency symptoms.

Table 5-6. Interpretation of Plant Analysis for Dry Edible Beans
Nutrient Units Critical Concentration1

Maximum Normal Concentration2
Nitrogen (N)
%
4.00
5.5
Phosphorus (P)
%
0.15
0.5
Potassium (K)
%
1.20
2.5
Calcium (Ca)
%
 
5.0
Magnesium (Mg)
%
0.10
1.0
Boron (B)
ppm
10.0
55.0
Copper (Cu)
ppm
4.0
30.0
Manganese (Mn)
ppm
14.0
100.0
Zinc (Zn)
ppm
14.0
50.0

1 Yield loss due to nutrient deficiency is expected with nutrient concentrations at or below the "critical" concentration.
2 Maximum normal concentrations are more than adequate but do not necessarily cause toxicities.


Zinc

Zinc deficiency rarely occurs in beans. It is most likely to occur in spots where the topsoil has been lost. Zinc deficiency can be corrected by foliar spray application of 0.5% zinc sulphate spray in 190 L/ha (76 L/acre), plus wetting agent. One kilogram (2.21 lb) of zinc sulphate in 200 L (53 gal) of water makes a 0.5% solution. Zinc chelate is also effective as a spray. Soil application is not effective.

Boron

Beans are very sensitive to boron and should not be grown in a field where boron was applied to rutabagas the year before.


For more information:
Toll Free: 1-877-424-1300
E-mail: ag.info.omafra@ontario.ca
Author: OMAFRA Staff
Creation Date: 1 May 2009
Last Reviewed:

1 May 2009