Effect of Fertilization on Soil Quality

A special issue of Agronomy (ISSN 2073-4395). This special issue belongs to the section "Farming Sustainability".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (10 April 2024) | Viewed by 3162

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
Institute of Agricultural Resources and Regional Planning, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Beijing 100081, China
Interests: nutrient management; nutrient cycling

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Soil quality is the crucial foundation for high crop productivity and global food safety, and fertilization practices have a great effect on soil quality and high crop yield. However, intensive agriculture production has brought about great environmental stress. This Special Issue will focus on the effect of fertilization practices on soil quality, where fertilization practices include chemical fertilizers, organic fertilizers, and other new types of fertilizers (controlled release fertilizers and soil conditioners), and soil quality includes soil carbon fixation, mineral element cycle, soil biology and ecology, cultivated land quality and soil health, and the accumulation of heavy metals, microplastics, and different antibiotics in typical regions.

Dr. Shicheng Zhao
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • microbial diversity
  • soil organic carbon sequestration
  • heavy metal
  • nutrient accumulation microplastics

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

17 pages, 2412 KiB  
Article
The Effect of Nitrogen Reduction and Applying Bio-Organic Fertilisers on Soil Nutrients and Apple Fruit Quality and Yield
by Ruiyun Yao, Ru Bai, Qingfan Yu, Yaqi Bao and Weiwei Yang
Agronomy 2024, 14(2), 345; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy14020345 - 08 Feb 2024
Viewed by 709
Abstract
In this study, we investigated the effect of partially substituting inorganic nitrogen with bio-organic fertiliser on the ‘Tianhong2’ Fuji apple planting in Xinjiang. Bio-organic fertiliser was applied, and nitrogen was reduced by 20% (T2), 40% (T3), and 60% (T4) during the blooming and [...] Read more.
In this study, we investigated the effect of partially substituting inorganic nitrogen with bio-organic fertiliser on the ‘Tianhong2’ Fuji apple planting in Xinjiang. Bio-organic fertiliser was applied, and nitrogen was reduced by 20% (T2), 40% (T3), and 60% (T4) during the blooming and fruit expansion periods with conventionally fertilised fields used as control (T1); soil nutrient, soil enzyme activity, leaf nutrients, fruit quality, and yield were measured. The total nitrogen (TN), total phosphorus (TP), total potassium (TK), total calcium (TCa), available phosphorus (AP), available potassium (AK), and soil organic matter (SOM) contents, as well as the soil catalase (S-CAT), soil uretrase (S-UE), soil saccharase (S-SC), and soil nitrate reductase (S-NR) activities, significantly increased in the experimental soils compared with those in T1. In addition, TP, TCa, and total magnesium (TMg) content in apples significantly increased. Compared to T1, the T2 and T3 treatments significantly improved the fruit yield and quality, increasing the sugar–acid ratio, soluble protein, soluble sugar, peel carotenoid, and anthocyanin content and reducing peel chlorophyll content. The brightness (L*), red–green axis (a*), yellow–blue axis (b*), colour intensity (C), and tone (h°) values changed. The yield per hectare and nitrogen fertiliser partial productivity values were significantly increased. Overall, the T2 treatment resulted in the best outcome for the Yili area. In conclusion, partially substituting inorganic nitrogen with bio-organic fertiliser can effectively increase soil and leaf nutrient content and improve fruit yield and quality. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Effect of Fertilization on Soil Quality)
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12 pages, 5137 KiB  
Article
Optimized Nitrogen Fertilization Promoted Soil Organic Carbon Accumulation by Increasing Microbial Necromass Carbon in Potato Continuous Cropping Field
by Huidan Lv, Ping He and Shicheng Zhao
Agronomy 2024, 14(2), 307; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy14020307 - 30 Jan 2024
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Abstract
The form and distribution of organic carbon in soil affect its stability and storage, and nitrogen (N) fertilization can affect the transformation and accumulation of soil organic carbon (SOC), whereas how the N fertilizer rate affects SOC storage by regulating its fractions in [...] Read more.
The form and distribution of organic carbon in soil affect its stability and storage, and nitrogen (N) fertilization can affect the transformation and accumulation of soil organic carbon (SOC), whereas how the N fertilizer rate affects SOC storage by regulating its fractions in a potato continuous cropping system is unknown. A 6-year field experiment was conducted to study the effect of different N fertilizer rates (NE (Nutrient Expert) –N, NE–1/2N, NE, and NE+1/2N) on the changes in SOC and its fractions in a potato continuous cropping system in North China. Soil NO3-N gradually increased with increasing N fertilizer rates, whereas the N fertilizer rate had less effect on NH4+-N. Compared with the NE−N treatment, the increasing N fertilization increased the SOC and its components, whereas these C fractions did not continue to increase or began to decrease after N fertilization exceeded the rate applied in the NE treatment. While the increase in mineral-associated organic C (MAOC; 16.1–17.2% and 26.1–52.7% in the 0–20 cm and 20–40 cm layers, respectively) was greater than that of particulate organic C (POC; 3.7–7.4% and 11.5–16.4% in the 0–20 cm and 20–40 cm layers, respectively), the increase in bacterial necromass C (BNC; 9.2–21.8% and 28.9–40.4% in the 0–20 cm and 20–40 cm layers, respectively) was greater than that of fungal necromass C (FNC; 6.2–10.1% and 7.1–24.9% in the 0–20 cm and 20–40 cm layers, respectively). Furthermore, the increase in FNC was greater than that of BNC in the 20–40 cm layer of the same treatment. SOC was significantly and positively correlated with MAOC and FNC, and the correlation between SOC and both MNC and FNC was more significant in the 20–40 cm layer than in the 0–20 cm layer. Overall, in the potato continuous cropping system in North China, N fertilization improved SOC storage by increasing MNC to form MAOC, and optimizing N fertilization based on the NE system could better balance the increase and mineralization loss of SOC to achieve high SOC sequestration. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Effect of Fertilization on Soil Quality)
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15 pages, 2818 KiB  
Article
Temperature Matters More than Fertilization for Straw Decomposition in the Soil of Greenhouse Vegetable Field
by Long Ma, Ruonan Li, Haoan Luan, Jiwei Tang, Liying Wang and Shaowen Huang
Agronomy 2024, 14(2), 233; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy14020233 - 23 Jan 2024
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Abstract
As the largest organic carbon input to agroecosystems, crop straw can solve the problem of soil quality degradation in greenhouse vegetable fields, harmonize the balance between soil nutrients and energy, and improve soil quality to maintain the sustainable production of greenhouse vegetables. However, [...] Read more.
As the largest organic carbon input to agroecosystems, crop straw can solve the problem of soil quality degradation in greenhouse vegetable fields, harmonize the balance between soil nutrients and energy, and improve soil quality to maintain the sustainable production of greenhouse vegetables. However, the microbial mechanism of the straw decomposition process under different temperatures and fertilization treatments in greenhouse vegetable soils has not been clarified. Soil samples were used to investigate the biology of straw decomposition in the soil at three incubation temperatures (15, 25, and 35 °C) through a soil incubation experiment (60 d) under different fertilization treatments. Fertilization treatments for this long-term field experiment included chemical fertilizer (CF), substitution of half of the chemical N fertilizer with manure (CM), straw (CS), or combined manure and straw (CMS). The results showed that soil hydrolase activities tended to decrease with increasing temperature during straw decomposition. Compared with the CF, organic substitutions (CM, CMS, and CS) increased soil β-glucosidase, β-cellobiosidase, N-acetyl-glucosaminidase, and β-xylosidase activities during straw decomposition. Soil CO2 emission rates were the highest at each incubation temperature on the first day, rapidly declining at 25 °C and 35 °C and slowly declining at 15 °C. The soil CO2 cumulative emissions tended to increase with increasing temperature under different fertilization treatments. PCA showed that the responses of soil enzyme activities to temperature at 7, 15, and 30 d of straw decomposition were stronger than those of fertilization. In summary, both fertilization treatment and incubation temperature could influence soil CO2 emissions by affecting soil physicochemical properties and enzyme activities during straw decomposition, whereas incubation temperature had a stronger effect on straw decomposition than fertilization, as indicated by PLS-PM and three-way ANOVA. Considering the influence for fertilization on the straw decomposition process at different incubation temperatures, the straw applications (CMS and CS) were more suitable to temperature changes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Effect of Fertilization on Soil Quality)
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16 pages, 9342 KiB  
Article
Soil Bacterial Community and Greenhouse Gas Emissions as Responded to the Coupled Application of Nitrogen Fertilizer and Microbial Decomposing Inoculants in Wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) Seedling Stage under Different Water Regimes
by Djifa Fidele Kpalari, Abdoul Kader Mounkaila Hamani, Cao Hui, Jean Mianikpo Sogbedji, Junming Liu, Yang Le, Rakhwe Kama and Yang Gao
Agronomy 2023, 13(12), 2950; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy13122950 - 29 Nov 2023
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Abstract
The soil microbial community is critically important in plant nutrition and health. However, this community is extremely sensitive to various environmental conditions. A pot experiment was conducted during the wheat seedling stage to better understand the influences of the coupled application of nitrogen [...] Read more.
The soil microbial community is critically important in plant nutrition and health. However, this community is extremely sensitive to various environmental conditions. A pot experiment was conducted during the wheat seedling stage to better understand the influences of the coupled application of nitrogen (N) and microbial decomposing inoculants (MDI) on the soil bacteria community under different water regimes. There were two levels of water and six levels of fertilization. The results reveal that water stress increased the relative abundance of Acidobacteria and decreased that of Firmicutes and Proteobacteria. The application of 250 kg N ha−1 altered the diversity of the bacterial community but increased the relative abundance of nitrifying bacteria. Nitrous oxide (N2O) and carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions were negatively correlated with Myxococcota and Methylomirabilota while positively correlated with Patescibacteria. These two gases were also positively correlated with nitrifying bacteria, and the correlation was more significant under the full irrigation regime. These findings indicate that MDI does not substantially influence the soil bacterial community and its relationship with greenhouse gas emission at the wheat seedling stage and that the abundance of the soil bacterial community would mainly depend on the rational control of the amount of N and water applied. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Effect of Fertilization on Soil Quality)
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