A two-location experiment was carded out at five to six nitrogen levels to study the relationship between chlorophyll-meter readings (SPAD values) and physiological or yield traits in short-season cotton. The results showed that there were highly significant (P < 0.01) linear relationships between SPAD values and contents of both nitrogen and chlorophyll at each growth stage, and as well as with the daily increase in plant height during early flowering. The relationship between nitrogen concentration and SPAD was stronger when nitrogen was expressed on a leaf area: (N(a)) rather than on a dry weight (N(dw)) basis. Significant curvilinear relationships were found between SPAD values at various stages and photosynthetic intensity, lint yield, and total boll number per hectare, respectively. Furthermore, the linear regressions between SPAD values and N fertilizer levels were highly significant (P < 0.01), and before the boll opening stage, the slopes of these regressions were similar (0.040-0.041) at the two locations. These data provided evidence that the chlorophyll meter could be used to determine sidedress N requirements of short-season cotton before boll opening stage. Critical SPAD levels for maximum lint yield were established as 32.4, 33.1, 35.0, 43.55, and 39.7 at early flowering, flowering peak, boll forming, the beginning of boll opening and boll opening stages, respectively. It was also established that 24.2-25.0 kg ha-1 increase in N application should be necessary for each unit decrease in SPAD value below the critical level.
Feibo, W., Lianghuan, W., & Fuhua, X. (1998). Chlorophyll meter to predict nitrogen sidedress requirements for short-season cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.). Field Crops Research, 56(3), 309–314. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0378-4290(97)00108-1