Soil Nutrient Levels after Corn Harvest under NPSFe Biofertilizer and NPKZn Briquettes

Soil Nutrient Levels after Corn Harvest under NPSFe Biofertilizer and NPKZn Briquettes

Xinhua Yin* and John H. Winings

Department of Plant Sciences, University of Tennessee, 605 Airways Boulevard, Jackson, TN 38301, USA

Interest in the use of alternate fertilizers has increased in recent years for improving crop nutrition and soil health. The efficacy of these fertilizers on corn (Zea mays L.) production has not been well documented. Alternate fertilizers organically enhanced NPSFe biofertilizer (NPSFe) manufactured from sterilized organic additives extracted from municipal wastewater biosolids and NPKZn briquettes (briquettes) produced by compacting commercially available solid fertilizers into a super-granule between 1-3 grams were evaluated for nutrient concentrations in the soil relative to common fertilizers ammonium sulfate (+P+K) and urea (+P+K) at Jackson and Grand Junction, TN from 2011 to 2013. NPSFe, the briquettes, ammonium sulfate, and urea and four N application rates of 0, 85, 128/170, and 170/255 kg ha-1 were assigned to the main and sub plots, respectively, in a split plot randomized complete block design with four replicates. Soil at a 0-15 cm depth was analyzed for Bray P, NO3–N, NH4+-N, SO42–S, and organic C concentrations after corn harvest. The briquettes produced lower soil NO3–N concentrations than the other fertilizers particularly under wet soil conditions. NPSFe sometimes had higher post-harvest soil NH4+-N than the briquettes and ammonium sulfate. NPSFe sometimes tended to be higher than the other fertilizers in post-harvest soil P concentrations after corn harvest, thus the P provided by NPSFe may be less available than TSP. NPSFe and ammonium sulfate both increased post-harvest soil SO42–S levels compared to the briquettes and urea, particularly at higher application rates. NPSFe had greater soil organic C level than the other fertilizers. In conclusion, NPSFe consistently increases soil organic C level, particularly at the higher N rates, within three years of experimentation, which may promote microbial activities and health of the soil.

Keywords: Biofertilizer, Briquettes, Corn, Nitrogen, Phosphorus, Sulfur, Carbon

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How to cite this article:
Xinhua Yin and John H. Winings. Soil Nutrient Levels after Corn Harvest under NPSFe Biofertilizer and NPKZn Briquettes. American Journal of Agricultural Research, 2019,4:70. DOI: 10.28933/ajar-2019-08-2907


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