California Crop Fertilization Guidelines

UC Davis
A collaboration between CDFA, FREP and UC Davis

Barley Nitrogen Uptake and Partitioning

The Fertilization guidelines can also be found on the UC Davis Nutrient Management website .

Seasonal N Uptake

Barley nitrogen uptake curve

Nitrogen uptake of barley grown at two fertilization rates determined by harvesting the aboveground biomass at different times during the growing season. Barley took up little N until tillering. Most N was taken up between tillering and heading. Adapted from [2,5].

Nitrogen Partitioning

At maturity, approximately three fourths of the aboveground N of high yielding barley is in the grains, while about one fourth is in the straw [3].

Nitrogen Removed at Harvest

Nitrogen removed with barley grain at harvest. The overall average is weighted for the number of observations in each trial. More information can be found here [3].

Location Years Removal (lbs N/ton @ 12% moisture) Source
    Mean Range  
California 1997-2011 34.6 29 - 40.6 [6]
Colorado 2001-05 33.0 27.9 - 44.8 [4]
Montana 2006-11 36.5 27 - 48.7 [7]
Italy 2001-05 34.1 28.4 - 40 [2]
Italy 2006-11 22.2 19.6 - 24.9 [1]
Weighted Average 33.6 19.6 - 48.7  




  1. Albrizio, R., Todorovic, M., Matic, T., Stellaci, A.M., 2010. Comparing the interactive effects of water and nitrogen on durum wheat and barley grown in a Mediterranean environment. Field Crops Research 155, 179-190.
  2. Delogu, G., Cattivelli, L., Pecchioni, N., De Falcis, D., Maggiore, T., Stanca, A.M., 1998. Uptake and agronomic efficiency in winter barley and winter wheat. European Journal of Agronomy 9, 11-20.
  3. Geisseler, D., 2016. Nitrogen concentrations in harvested plant parts -A literature overview. Report to the Kings River Watershed Coalition.
  4. Halvorson, A.D., Reule, C.A., 2007. Irrigated, no-till corn and barley response to nitrogen in northern Colorado. Agronomy Journal 99, 1521-1529.
  5. Jackson, L.F., Williams, J., 2006. Growth and development of small grains. In: University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources (Ed.). Small Grain Production Manual. Publication 8164.
  6. Robinson, P., 2011. Assays of individual samples of California feedstuffs.
  7. Sainju, U.M., Lenssen, A.W., Barsotti, J.L., 2013. Dryland malt barley yield and quality affected by tillage, cropping sequence and nitrogen fertilization. Agronomy Journal 105, 329-340.