Fertilizer research

, Volume 34, Issue 1, pp 1–8 | Cite as

Nitrogen fertilizer in leucaena alley cropping. II. residual value of nitrogen fertilizer and leucaena residues

  • Z. H. Xu
  • R. J. K. Myers
  • P. G. Saffigna
  • A. L. Chapman
Article

Abstract

Legume residues have been credited with supplying mineral nitrogen (N) to the associated cereal crop and improving soil fertility in the long term. Few studies using15N have reported the fate of legume N and fertilizer N in the presence of legume residues in soil-plant systems over periods of two years or longer. A field experiment was conducted in microplots to evaluate: (1) the residual value of the15N added in leucaena residues; (2) the residual value of fertilizer15N applied in the presence of unlabelled leucaena residues in the first year to maize over three subsequent years; and (3) the long-term fate of residual fertilizer and leucaena15N in a leucaena alley cropping system.

There was a significant increase in maize production over three subsequent years after addition of leucaena residues. The residual effect of fertilizer N increased maize yield in the second year when N fertilizer was applied at 36 kg N ha−1 in the first year in the presence of leucaena residues. Of the leucaena15N applied in the first year, the second, third and fourth maize crop recovered 2.6%, 1.8% and 1.4%, respectively. The corresponding values for the residual fertilizer15N were 0.7%, 0.4% and 0.3%. About 12–14% of the fertilizer15N added in the first year was found in the 200 cm soil profile over the following three years. This differed from the 38–41% of leucaena15N detected in the soil over the same period. Most of the residual fertilizer and leucaena15N in the soil was immobilized in the top 25 cm with less than 1% leached below 100 cm. More than 36% of the leucaena15N and fertilizer15N added in the first year was apparently lost from the soil-plant system in the first two years. No further loss of the residual leucaena and fertilizer15N was detected after two years.

Key words

leucaena maize 15N recovery residual15

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. 1.
    Cao ZH, DeDatta SK and Fillery IRP (1984) Nitrogen-15 balance and residual effects of urea-N in wetland rice fields as affected by deep placement technique. Soil Sci Soc Am J 48: 203–208Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Chen RY and Zhu ZL (1982) Characteristics of the fate and efficiency of nitrogen in supergranules of urea. Fert Res 3: 63–71Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    D'Mallo JPF and Fraser KW (1981) The composition of leaf meal fromLeucaena leucocephala. Trop Sci 23: 75–78Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Firestone MK (1982) Biological denitrification. In: Stevenson RJ (ed) Nitrogen in Agricultural Soils, pp 289–326. Madison, Wisc.: ASA, CSSA, and SSSA, USAGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Fox RH, Myers RJK and Vallis I (1992) The nitrogen mineralization rate of legume residues in soil as influenced by their polyphenol, lignin, and nitrogen contents. Plant and Soil (in press)Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Gomez KA and Gomez AA (1984) Statistical Procedures for Agricultural Research. Int Rice Res Inst, Manila, PhilippinesGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Harris GH and Hesterman OB (1990) Quantifying the nitrogen contribution from alfalfa to soil and two succeeding crops using nitrogen-15. Agron J 82: 129–134Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Jenkinson DS (1991) The Rothamsted long-term experiments: are they still of use? Agron J 83: 2–10Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Jenkinson DS, Fox RH and Rayner JH (1985) Interaction between fertilizer nitrogen and soil nitrogen - the so-called “priming” effect. J Soil Sci 36: 425–444Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Kang BT, Grimme H and Lawson TL (1985) Alley cropping sequentially cropped maize and cowpea with leucaena on a sandy soil in southern Nigeria. Plant and Soil 85: 267–277Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Kang BT, Reynolds L and Atta-krah AN (1990) Alley farming. In: Brady NC (ed) Advances in Agronomy 43, pp 315–359. Madison, Wis: American Society of AgronomyGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Mittal SP and Singh P (1989) Intercropping field crops between rows ofLeucaena leucocephala under rainfed conditions in northern India. Agroforestry Systems 8: 165–172Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Mulongoy K and Van der Meersch MK (1988) Nitrogen contribution by leucaena (Leucaena leucocephala) prunings to maize in an alley cropping system. Biol Fertil Soils 6. 282–285Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Myers RJK (1983) The effect of plant residues on plant uptake and leaching of soil and fertilizer nitrogen in a tropical red earth soil. Fert Res 4: 249–260Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Osuntogum BA, Adewusi SRA, Telek L and Oke OL (1987) The effect of tanin content on nutritive value of some leaf protein concentrates. Hum Nutr, Food Sci Nutr 41 F (1): 41–46Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Sanginga N, Mulongoy K and Ayanaba A (1988) Nitrogen contribution of Leucaena/rhizobium symbiosis to soil and a subsequent maize crop. Plant and Soil 112; 137–141Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Sisworo WH, Mitrosuhardjo MM, Rasjid H and Myers RJK (1990) The relative roles of N fixation, fertilizer, crop residues and soil in supplying N in multiple cropping systems in a humid, tropical upland cropping system. Plant and Soil 121: 73–82Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Vallis I (1983) Uptake by grass and transfer to soil of nitrogen from15N-labelled legume materials applied to Rhodes grass pasture. Aust J Agric Res 34: 367–376Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Varco JJ, Frye WW, Smith MS and Mackown CT (1989) Tillage effects on nitrogen recovery by corn from a nitrogen-15 labelled legume cover crop. Soil Sci Soc Am J 53: 822–827Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    White PJ, Vallis I and Saffigna PG (1986) The effect of stubble management on the availability of15N-labelled residual fertilizer N and crop stubble N in an irrigated black earth. Aust J Exp Agric 26: 99–106Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Xu ZH, Cao ZH and Li QK (1987) Studies on the effect of urea supergranule on corn and the fate of nitrogen in calcareous sandy soil. Acta Pedologica Sinica 24: 51–58Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Xu ZH, Myers RJK, Saffigna PG and Chapman AL (1993a) Nitrogen cycling in leucaena (Leucaena leucocephala) alley cropping in semi-arid tropics. II. Response of maize growth to addition of nitrogen fertilizer and plant residues. Plant and Soil 148: 73–82Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Xu ZH, Saffigna PG, Myers RJK and Chapman AL (1993b) Nitrogen cycling in leucaena (Leucaena leucocephala) alley cropping in semi-arid tropics I. Mineralization of nitrogen from leucaena residues. Plant and Soil 148: 63–72Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Xu ZH, Saffigna PG, Myers RJK and Chapman AL (1993c) Nitrogen fertilizer in leucaena alley cropping. I. Maize response to nitrogen fertilizer and fate of fertilizer-15N. Fert Res 33: 219–227Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Zoysa AKN, Keerthisinhe G and Upasena SH (1990) Effect ofLeucaena leucocephala (Lam) de Wit as green manure on nitrogen uptake and yield of rice. Biol Fertil Soils 9: 68–70Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Z. H. Xu
    • 1
  • R. J. K. Myers
    • 2
  • P. G. Saffigna
    • 1
  • A. L. Chapman
    • 3
  1. 1.Division of Environmental SciencesGriffith UniversityAustralia
  2. 2.Division of Tropical Crops and PasturesCSIROAustralia
  3. 3.Tropical Ecosystems Research CentreCSIRODarwinAustralia

Personalised recommendations