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Adam Radkowski and Iwona Radkowska

Abstract

A field experiment was conducted in the years 2012-2014, at the Plant Breeding Station in Polanowice near Krakow (220 m a.s.l.). The aim of the study was to investigate the effect of silicon (Si) on seed yield and quality of timothy-grass (Phleum pratense L.) of “Egida” cultivar. A univariate field experiment in randomized block design was repeated four times, and the area of the experimental plots was 10 m2. The soil on the experimental plots was a loess derived haplic phaeozem of bonitation class I. The experimental factor was spraying with a silicon formulation in the form of Optysil® fertilizer at three doses: 0.2, 0.5 and 0.8 dm3·ha−1. During the growing season, the plants were evaluated for their height, leaf greenness index (SPAD) and general condition. After harvesting, the seed yield and quality were assessed. The study revealed a significant effect of silicon on plant height, general condition and yield and quality of the seeds. The plants treated with silicon showed lower infestation rate with pathogens and pests than the control ones. Foliar fertilization with the highest dose of the silicon formulation (0.8 dm3·ha−1) caused a significant increase in seed yield as compared with control. The effects were also satisfactory in the plants treated with the formulation at 0.5 dm3·ha−1. The seeds obtained from silicon-treated plants were bigger, as revealed by the weight of 1000 seeds, and exhibited higher germination ability than the control seeds.

Open access

Adam Radkowski, Iwona Radkowska and Tadeusz Lemek

Abstract

Titanium is one of a plant biostimulators. It stimulates life processes, growth and development, as well as affects physiological and biochemical pathways, often increasing biomass production and enhancing yield. An open field experiment was conducted in the years 2011-2013 in Polanowice, Poland to investigate the effects of titanium foliar fertilization on the growth of timothy grass (Phleum pratense L.). This single-factor, randomized block design study was performed in four replicates on research plots with the area of 10 m2 each. The substrate was black loess soil (chernozem) typical for top class farmland. Titanium fertilization via leaf spray was performed with a water solution of Tytanit® at three doses of 0.2, 0.4, and 0.8 dm3 · ha−1. Foliar fertilization with the highest dose of Tytanit® significantly increased seed yield, thousand grain weight and germination capacity. Moreover, the middle dose of Tytanit® (0.4 dm3 · ha−1) was enough to observe a positive effect on the sample.

Open access

Iwona Radkowska, Eugeniusz Herbut and Adam Radkowski

Abstract

The aim of the study was to determine the yield and chemical composition of milk from TMR-(group I) and pasture-fed Simmental cows (group II). The study was conducted with second and third lactation Simmental cows between 30 and 200 days of lactation. The present research showed that compared to TMR feeding, the use of summer pasture feeding and proper supplementation with high-energy feeds allow for higher milk yield and higher nutritive value of the milk. Compared to TMR-fed cows (group I), milk from pastured cows (group II) was characterized by a more beneficial composition of protein fractions, and a higher content of α-lactalbumin, β-lactoglobulin and lactoferrin. It also contained more vitamins A and E, calcium, magnesium and iodine, and had a significantly (P≤0.05) lower cholesterol content. The milk of cows from group II contained over twice as much CLA (1.59% of all acids) and 35% more n-3 PUFA, which resulted in a more beneficial n-6/n-3 fatty acids ratio of 2.88. In addition, this milk contained significantly (P≤0.05) less saturated fatty acids (SFA) and significantly more (P≤0.05) mono-(MUFA) and polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA). Consequently, the MUFA:SFA and PUFA:SFA ratios in this group were more favourable at 0.448 and 0.066, respectively. Also the content of desirable fatty acids (DFA) with hypocholesterolemic effects was higher in group II, which resulted in a more beneficial DFA:OFA ratio of 0.8 in this group. In conclusion, the use of summer pasture feeding and a proper supplemented feeding ration in Simmental cows with high-energy feeds allow for high milk yield and high nutritive value of the milk.