Agronomic response of sorghum varieties to nitrogen management – Terry Hie Hie 2014–15

2014 - 2015

Research organisaton
Funding sources

Trial details

Researcher(s) Peter Formann (NSW DPI)
Rick Graham (NSW DPI)
Year(s) 2014 - 2015
Contributor Department of Primary Industries NSW
Trial location(s) Terry Hie Hie, NSW
Further information View external link
Agronomic response of sorghum varieties to nitrogen management – Terry Hie Hie 2014–15 locations

To determine the agronomic response of sorghum to N management, to help develop more robust soil test/crop response guidelines. 

Key messages
  • Although plant available water (PAW) at sowing was ~47 mm (0–120 cm), timely in-crop rainfall of 257 mm improved yield potential.
  • If yield and subsequently fertiliser decisions were made on PAW at sowing and a low input approach to nitrogen (N) application was taken, as per the nil treatment in this experiment (42 kg/ha of Granulock Z), 0.9 t/ha or 20% of yield potential would have been lost, compared with the optimum N response rate (120 kg N/ha).
  • Significantly, even at modest levels of N application (e.g. 40–80 kg N/ha), grain yield was increased by 0.56 t/ha or 13% over the nil N treatment.
  • Although maximum yield was achieved at 11.1% grain protein content (GPC), the rate of grain yield increase per unit of additional N declined at GPC >10%. Importantly, results from this experiment did show that yield was compromised by N deficiency when GPC was <9%.
  • Results from this experiment highlight the need to consider yield potential in terms of targeted yields and hence N requirements. Importantly, if N inputs are limited then yield potential can be negatively affected.
Lead research organisation Department of Primary Industries NSW
Host research organisation N/A
Trial funding source GRDC UQ00063
Trial funding source DPI NSW
Related program MPCNII – Regional soil testing for the Northern Grains Region

This research was co-funded by the GRDC and NSW DPI as part of the collaborative GRDC, University of Queensland/NSW DPI project UQ00063: MPCNII – Regional soil testing for the Northern Grains Region. We thank Dr Neroli Graham (NSW DPI) for statistical analyses. Technical assistance provided by Nicole Carrigan, Peter Perfrement and Michael Dal Santo (all NSW DPI), is gratefully acknowledged. Thanks to the Ledingham family for hosting the site and to Gavin McDouall, HMAg for his assistance.

Other trial partners Co-operator: Michael Ledingham
Download the trial report to view additional trial information


Crop type Cereal (Grain): Sorghum
Treatment type(s)
  • Crop: Variety
  • Fertiliser: Rate
Trial type
Trial design

Terry Hie Hie 2014

Sow rate or Target density 30,000 plants/ha
Sowing machinery

Monosem double disc precision planter with single skip row configuration

Sow date 2 October 2014
Harvest date 4 March 2015
Plot size Not specified
Plot replication 6

42 kg/ha Granulock Z extra applied at planting 

Other trial notes

This research paper is an extract from the publication Northern grains Research Results 2016, available at

Download the trial report to view additional method/treatment information
Trial source data and summary not available
Check the trial report PDF for trial results.
Observed trial site soil information
Trial site soil testing
Not specified
Soil conditions
Trial site Soil texture
Terry Hie Hie, NSW Vertisol
Derived trial site soil information
Australian Soil Classification Source: ASRIS
Trial site Soil order
Terry Hie Hie, NSW Chromosol
Soil Moisture Source: BOM/ANU
Average amount of water stored in the soil profile during the year, estimated by the OzWALD model-data fusion system.
Year Terry Hie Hie NSW
2015 703.6mm
2014 633.1mm
2013 579.5mm
2012 597.5mm
2011 635.0mm
2010 673.2mm
2009 654.3mm
2008 673.0mm
2007 666.9mm
2006 658.5mm
2005 658.8mm
2004 668.9mm
2003 657.9mm
2002 643.5mm
2001 634.0mm
2000 588.4mm
National soil grid Source: CSIRO/TERN
NOTE: National Soil Grid data is aggregated information for background information on the wider area
Actual soil values can vary significantly in a small area and the trial soil tests are the most relevant data where available

Soil properties



Terry Hie Hie NSW 2014

Observed climate information

Rainfall trial gsr (mm) 257.5mm

Derived climate information

Terry Hie Hie NSW

NOTE: Exact trial site locality unknown - Climate data may not be accurate

Some data on this site is sourced from the Bureau of Meteorology

SILO weather estimates sourced from
Jeffrey, S.J., Carter, J.O., Moodie, K.B. and Beswick, A.R. (2001). Using spatial interpolation to construct a comprehensive archive of Australian climate data , Environmental Modelling and Software, Vol 16/4, pp 309-330. DOI: 10.1016/S1364-8152(01)00008-1.

Trial report and links

2014 trial report

Trial last modified: 19-10-2023 14:16pm AEST