Winter what is one of the major crops of Utah. For more than 50 years winter wheat has been grown on the dry lands of the state. It is about the only crop grown on these lands under the usual alternate cropping and fallow system. Since 1941 acreage in the state has increased about 60 percent. Little or no manure is applied and only occasionally is a legume green manure turned under. It is apparent that with the original low supply of nitrogen in most of the soils of the state, together with the depleting effects of the common cropping practice, the result will be smaller yields and grain of inferior quality. Hence, nitrogen rather than moisture may be, in many instances, the limiting factor in crop production. As a result of a reduction in yield and quality of wheat, growers and processors are concerned about the problem.
There appear to be two possible practical ways of maintaining or increasing the soil nitrogen of the dry lands. These are: (1) the use of legumes, especially alfalfa, in a rotation; (2) the use of commercial fertilizers. This investigation was confined to the use of commercial fertilizers as a possible partial solution to the problem of increasing the yield and quality of winter wheat. At the time this study began in 1942 no nitrogen fertilizers were being applied by the farmers of the state. By 1951 an estimated 1,800 tons of nitrogen were used on dry lands.
Peterson, Howard B., "Bulletin No. 353 - Effect of Nitrogen Fertilizer on Yield and Protein Content of Winter Wheat in Utah" (1952). UAES Bulletins. Paper 313.