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Article

Effects of Zeolitic Urea on Nitrogen Leaching (NH4-N and NO3-N) and Volatilization (NH3) in Spodosols and Alfisols

1
Indian River Research and Education Center, Department of Soil and Water Sciences, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida, 2199 S. Rock Rd., Fort Pierce, FL 34945, USA
2
Institute of Soil Science, Pir Mehr Ali Shah Arid Agriculture University Rawalpindi, Murree Road, Rawalpindi 46300, Pakistan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Laura Bulgariu
Water 2021, 13(14), 1921; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13141921
Received: 30 May 2021 / Revised: 5 July 2021 / Accepted: 9 July 2021 / Published: 12 July 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remediation of Contaminated or Degraded Soil and Water Resources)
Global use of urea nitrogen (N) fertilizer is increasing, but N losses are still very high (40–70%). Zeolites have the capability of holding NH4+, thus reducing N losses when applied as a soil amendment. However, application of a large quantity of zeolite is costly and inconvenient. In this study, zeolitic fertilizers were evaluated to select the best formulation with reduced leaching of NH4-N and NO3-N and NH3 volatilization in agricultural soils (Alfisol and Spodosol). The treatments included the following: T0 = control, T1 = urea fertilizer, T2 = zeo-urea (1:1), T3 = zeo-urea (2:1), T4 = zeo-urea (3:1), T5 = zeo-urea (1:2), and T6 = zeo-urea (1:3). Leaching was performed at 4, 8, 12, 19, 25, 32, 39 and 45 days after the soils were treated with the designated fertilizers, including control, and packed into columns. Leachate samples were collected after each leaching event and analyzed for the concentrations of NH4-N and NO3-N and the quantity of leachate. Ammonia volatilization was recorded at days 1, 5, 9, 13 and 20 of soil treatments. Results indicate that zeolitic fertilizer formulations effectively reduced N losses. NH4-N loss was reduced by 13% and 28% by zeo-urea (1:1) in Alfisol and Spodosol soils, respectively, whereas zeo-urea (2:1) and zeo-urea (3:1) effectively decreased NO3-N leaching in Alfisol. Volatilization loss of NH3 was reduced by 47% in Spodosol and 32% in Alfisol soil with zeo-urea (1:1) as compared with that of urea fertilizer. The results suggest that zeo-urea (1:1) is an effective fertilizer formulation for reducing N losses, especially in Alfisol, as compared with conventional urea fertilizer. View Full-Text
Keywords: zeolite; zeo-urea; formulation; leachate; ratios zeolite; zeo-urea; formulation; leachate; ratios
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MDPI and ACS Style

Ahmad, A.; Ijaz, S.S.; He, Z. Effects of Zeolitic Urea on Nitrogen Leaching (NH4-N and NO3-N) and Volatilization (NH3) in Spodosols and Alfisols. Water 2021, 13, 1921. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13141921

AMA Style

Ahmad A, Ijaz SS, He Z. Effects of Zeolitic Urea on Nitrogen Leaching (NH4-N and NO3-N) and Volatilization (NH3) in Spodosols and Alfisols. Water. 2021; 13(14):1921. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13141921

Chicago/Turabian Style

Ahmad, Ayaz, Shahzada S. Ijaz, and Zhenli He. 2021. "Effects of Zeolitic Urea on Nitrogen Leaching (NH4-N and NO3-N) and Volatilization (NH3) in Spodosols and Alfisols" Water 13, no. 14: 1921. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13141921

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