Differential response of biochar derived from rice-residue waste on phosphorus availability in soils with dissimilar pH

  • S. Mukherjee
  • M. S. MaviEmail author
  • J. Singh
Original Paper


Although use of biochar as an amendment for soil C accretion has received immense prominence, its role on alleviating crop P demand remains largely contentious. Therefore, an incubation study for 60 days was conducted to examine the impact of biochar derived from rice-residue waste and Inorganic-P on phosphorous availability in soils with dissimilar pH (acid, neutral and alkali soil). The experimental soils were treated with 0, 20 g kg−1 (w/w) rice-residue biochar with three rates of Inorganic-P (KH2PO4) (0, 25, 50 mg kg−1). Application of rice-residue biochar alone or in combination with Inorganic-P in the experimental soils resulted in significant increase in P pools possibly due to greater available P content in biochar itself; biochar impelled decrease in soil P sorption capacity and or; biochar-facilitated release of soil organic matter bound P. Among the Inorganic-P fractions, content of Fe-P and Al-P was greater in acid soil, whereas Ca-P content was higher in neutral or alkali soils, irrespective of biochar and Inorganic-P treatments. Furthermore, ability of rice-residue biochar to decrease phospho-monoesterase activity in the experimental soils was indicative of its significance to act as a long-term source of phosphorous in soil. Therefore, amendment of soil with biochar can be used as an important strategy for sustainable management of surplus rice-residue and fulfilling phosphorous demand in differential pH soils of Indo-Gangetic plains.


Biochar Inorganic-P fertilizer Phosphorous fractions Phosphorous sorption Rice-residue Soil pH 



We thank Indian Council of Agricultural Research for providing fellowship to the first author (SM). This manuscript is part of first author’s research thesis submitted for fulfillment of requirement of his degree programme. We thank Ms. Jaskiran for editing the manuscript, Manpreet, Tony for help in preparation of biochar and soil sampling.


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Copyright information

© Islamic Azad University (IAU) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Soil SciencePunjab Agricultural UniversityLudhianaIndia

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