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Agronomy 2018, 8(2), 22; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy8020022

Effect of Digestate and Biochar Amendments on Photosynthesis Rate, Growth Parameters, Water Use Efficiency and Yield of Chinese Melon (Cucumis melo L.) under Saline Irrigation

1
College of Water Conservancy and Hydropower Engineering, Hohai University, Nanjing 210098, China
2
Department of Soil Science, Agricultural Research Corporation, Wad Medani 126, Sudan
3
College of Hydrology and Water Resources, Hohai University, Nanjing 210098, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 2 December 2017 / Revised: 30 January 2018 / Accepted: 13 February 2018 / Published: 20 February 2018
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Abstract

Despite the recent interest in biochar and digestate as soil amendments for improving soil quality and increasing crop production, there is inadequate knowledge of the effect of the combination of biochar and digestate, particularly under saline irrigation conditions. A pot experiment with Chinese melon was conducted in a greenhouse, biochar (5%) and digestate (500 mL/pot) were used with and without the recommended mineral NPK (Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium) fertilizer dose (120-150-150 Kg ha−1). The plants were irrigated with tap water (SL0) and 2 dS/m (SL1) NaCl solution. The growth, photosynthesis rate, water use efficiency (WUE) and yield of Chinese melon were affected positively when biochar was combined with digestate amendment, particularly under saline irrigation water with and without mineral NPK fertilizer. The maximum yield under normal water was obtained by digestate (SL0: 218.87 t ha−1) and biochar amendment combined with digestate (SL1: 118.8 t ha−1) under saline water. The maximum WUE values were noticed with the biochar and digestate combination under all water treatments (SL0: 32.2 t ha−1 mm−1 and SL1: 19.6 t ha−1 mm−1). It was concluded that digestate alone was more effective than the use of biochar, particularly with normal water. The combination of biochar with digestate had a significant effect on the Chinese melon growth, photosynthesis rate, water use efficiency and yield under saline irrigation, and it can be used as an alternative fertilizer for mineral NPK fertilizer. View Full-Text
Keywords: biochar; digestate; water use efficiency; photosynthesis rate biochar; digestate; water use efficiency; photosynthesis rate
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Elbashier, M.M.A.; Xiaohou, S.; Ali, A.A.S.; Mohmmed, A. Effect of Digestate and Biochar Amendments on Photosynthesis Rate, Growth Parameters, Water Use Efficiency and Yield of Chinese Melon (Cucumis melo L.) under Saline Irrigation. Agronomy 2018, 8, 22.

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