Plant and Soil

, Volume 106, Issue 1, pp 35–41

C, N, and S mineralization of crop residues as influenced by crop species and nutrient regime

  • H. H. Janzen
  • R. M. N. Kucey

DOI: 10.1007/BF02371192

Cite this article as:
Janzen, H.H. & Kucey, R.M.N. Plant Soil (1988) 106: 35. doi:10.1007/BF02371192


The mineralization of C, N, and S from residues of three different crop species (wheat, lentil, and rape) grown under diverse nutritional regimes was measured over a 12-week incubation period under controlled conditions. The rate of decomposition, as measured by CO2 evolution, varied considerably among treatments and appeared to be controlled almost entirely by N content of the residue (R2=0.98). Similarly, N mineralization was strongly tied to N concentration. The critical N concentration, below which significant immobilization of N occurred, declined over time, ranging from 1.9% at day 14 to 1.1% at day 84. Mineralization of S was positively correlated with initial S concentration (R2=0.95) and negatively related to N concentration, apparently because of a dilution effect. The results demonstrate that decomposition and N and S mineralization of crop residues, under conditions prevalent in the experiment, are primarily a function of their nutrient concentrations rather than biochemial composition related to crop species. As a result, it should be possible to enhance rate of residue decomposition, increase quantities of N and S mineralized, and avert detrimental immobilization losses in the following year by governing the nutritional regime under which the crop is grown.

Key words

carbon crop residue mineralization nitrogen organic matter sulfur 

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • H. H. Janzen
    • 1
  • R. M. N. Kucey
    • 1
  1. 1.Agriculture Canada Research StationLethbridgeCanada

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