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A Comparison of Precise Fertilization Prescription Rates to a Conventional Approach Based on the Open Source GIS Software

Mladen Jurišić, Dorijan Radočaj, Ivan Plaščak, Irena Rapčan (original scientific paper)


Fertilization is one of the most important components of precision agriculture, ensuring high and stable crop yields. The process of spatial interpolation of soil sample data is recognized as a reliable method of determining the prescription rates for precise fertilization. However, the application of a free open-source geographic information system (GIS) software was often overlooked in the pro- cess. In this study, a method of precise fertilization prescription map creation was developed using an open-source GIS software to enable a wider and cheaper availability of its application. The study area covered three independent locations in Osijek-Baranja County. A method was developed for the fertilization of sugar beet with phosphorous pentoxide, but its application is universal with regard to the crop type. An ordinary kriging was determined as an optimal interpolation method for spatial interpolation, with the mean RMSE of 1.8754 and R2of 0.6955. By compar- ing the precision fertilization prescription rates to a conventional approach, the differences of 4.1 kg ha-1 for Location 1, 15.8 kg ha-1 for Location 2, and 11.2 kg ha-1 for Location 3 were observed. These values indicate a general deficit in soil phosphorous pentoxide, and precise fertilization could ensure its optimal content in the future sowing seasons.

Correspondent author:
Dorijan Radočaj, Josip Juraj Strossmayer University of Osijek, Faculty of Agrobiotechnical Sciences Osijek, Vladimira Preloga 1, 31000 Osijek, Croatia,