California Fertilization Guidelines

UC Davis
A collaboration between CDFA, FREP and UC Davis

Cauliflower Nitrogen Uptake and Partitioning

The fertilization guidelines on this site have been redesigned to be compliant with AB434. The guidelines in the traditional design with the latest updates can be found on the UC Davis Nutrient Management website .

Seasonal N Uptake

Season N Uptake Curve Graph

The N uptake curve is based on data from eight summer-planted commercial cauliflower fields in the Salinas Valley [3].

Nitrogen Partitioning

Nitrogen partitioning pie chart

Less than one third of the total aboveground N is removed with the harvested parts [1,2].

Nitrogen Removed at Harvest

Cauliflower yield and N removed at harvest from different studies.

Study location Years Marketable yield N application rate Aboveground N Harvested N Source
    (lbs/acre) (cwt/acre) (lbs/acre) (lbs/acre) (lbs/acre)  
Central Coast 2012-13 17,577 160 306 277 60 [2]
Germany 1996-97 270 264 95 [1]




  1. Kage H., Alt C., Stuetzel, H., 2003. Aspects of nitrogen use efficiency of cauliflower II. Productivity and nitrogen partitioning as influenced by N supply. Journal of Agricultural Science 141, 17-29.
  2. Smith, R., Cahn, M., Hartz, T.K., 2013. Survey of nitrogen uptake and applied irrigation water in broccoli, cauliflower and cabbage production in the Salinas Valley. CDFA FREP Proceedings 89, 117-119.
  3. Smith, R., Cahn, M., Hartz, T., Love, P., Farrara, B., 2016. Nitrogen dynamics of cole crop production: implications for fertility management and environmental protection. HortScience 51, 1586-1591.