Plant and Soil

, Volume 203, Issue 1, pp 91–101

A field study of nitrogen dynamics and spring barley growth as affected by the quality of incorporated residues from white clover and ryegrass

  • H. Hauggaard-Nielsen
  • A. de Neergaard
  • L.S. Jensen
  • H. Høgh-Jensen
  • J. Magid
Article

Abstract

Four different grass swards were grown on a sandy loam for 3 years, and then incorporated into the soil through rotovation in the spring. The treatments differed in the proportion of white clover (Trifolium repens) and ryegrass (Lolium perenne), both through seeding in pure stand or mixture and through N fertilization (0 or 150 kg N ha-1 yr-1) for the white clover-ryegrass mixtures. A control treatment (fallow), differing from the others in that the grass sward had been incorporated one year earlier, was also included. A spring barley (Hordeum vulgare cv. texane) crop was established in half of the experimental site and the other half was left unplanted. Carbon and nitrogen mineralization from the residues was measured as soil surface CO2 flux and soil inorganic N accumulation in unplanted plots under non-leaching conditions. Residue decomposition processes, barley dry matter production and N uptake showed clear differences between the five treatments, due especially to the differences in amount of residue N incorporated. Incorporated residue N was highest in the white clover in pure stand (C150), and lowest in the ryegrass in pure stand (G150) treatments, with non-fertilized and fertilized white clover-ryegrass residues (CG0 and CG150, respectively) intermediate and similar in both amount and quality of the residues. However, in spite of this similarity the treatments differed greatly with respect to both C and N mineralization, indicating that other factors than the measured quality parameters (i.e. C, N, C-to-N ratio, water solubles, cellulose, lignin) influenced their decomposition pattern. The highest crop dry matter production and N uptake was measured in the C150 treatment, followed by the CG0 and the fallow treatment, with considerable lower yields in the CG150 and G150 treatments. There was a significantly higher inorganic N content, 60 kg N ha-1, in the planted C150 and CG0 treatments during the seedling and tillering barley growth stages, with no significant difference between treatments during the later barley growth stages. Apparent net N mineralization measured in the unplanted CG0 treatment exceeded that of the C150, whereas the other treatments ranked similar to the barley N uptake rates. This indicated that availability of soil inorganic N at the early tillering stage was a key determining factor for the final barley dry matter yield and N uptake, with later N mineralization rates having lesser influence.

Hordeum vulgare L. inorganic N microbial biomass preceding crop effect soil respiration white clover-ryegrass residues 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Aita C, Recous S and Angers D A 1997 Short-term kinetics of residual wheat straw C and N under field conditions. Characterisation by 13C15N tracing and soil particle fractionation. Eur. J. Soil. Sci. 48, 283–294.Google Scholar
  2. Amato M, Ladd J N, Ellington A, Ford G, Mahoney J E, Taylor A C and Walsgott D 1987 Decomposition of plant materials in Australian soils. IV Decomposition in situ of 14C-and 15N-labelled legumes and wheat materials in a range of Southern Australian soils. Aust. J. Soil Res. 25, 95–105.Google Scholar
  3. Breland T A 1994 Measured and predicted mineralization of clover green manure at low temperatures at different depths in two soils. Plant Soil 166, 13–20.Google Scholar
  4. Chesson A 1997 Plant degradation by ruminants: Parallels with litter decomposition in soils. In Driven by Nature: Plant Litter Quality and Decomposition. Eds. G Cadish and K E Giller. pp 47–66. CAB International, Wallingford, UK.Google Scholar
  5. Fog K 1988 The effect of added nitrogen on the rate of decomposition or organic matter. Biol. Rev. 63, 43–462.Google Scholar
  6. Goering H K and van Soest P J 1970 Forage fibre analyses (apparatus, reagents, procedures and some applications). In Agriculture Handbook. Vol. 379, pp 1–19, USDA.Google Scholar
  7. Høgh-Jensen H and Schjoerring J K 1994 Measurement of biological dinitrogen fixation in grassland: Comparison of the enriched 15N dilution and the natural 15N abundance methods at different nitrogen application rates and defoliation frequencies. Plant Soil 166, 153–163.Google Scholar
  8. Høgh-Jensen H and Schjoerring J K 1997 Residual nitrogen effect of clover-ryegrass swards on yield and N accumulation of a subsequent winter wheat crop as studied by use of 15N methodology and mathematical modelling. Eur. J. Agron. 6, 235–243.Google Scholar
  9. Jan-Hammermeister D C, McGill W B and Jensen T L 1994a Dynamics of 15N in two soil-plant systems following incorporation of 10% bloom and full bloom field pea. Can. J. Soil Sci. 74, 99–107.Google Scholar
  10. Jan-Hammermeister D C, McGill W B and Jensen T L 1994b Nitrogen accumulation and relative rates of mineralization in two soils following legume green manuring. Can. J. Soil Sci. 74, 23–28.Google Scholar
  11. Jarvis S C, Stockdale E A, Shephard M A and Powlson D S 1996 Nitrogen mineralization in temperate agricultural soils: Processes and Measurements. Adv. Agron. 57, 187–235.Google Scholar
  12. Jensen E S 1994 Availability of nitrogen in 15N-labelled mature pea residues to subsequent crops in the field. Soil Biol. Biochem. 26, 465–472.Google Scholar
  13. Jensen E S 1996a Compared cycling in a soil-plant system of pea and barley residue nitrogen. Plant Soil 182, 13–23.Google Scholar
  14. Jensen E S 1996b Rhizodeposition of N by pea and barley and its effect on soil N dynamics. Soil Biol. Biochem. 28, 65–71.Google Scholar
  15. Jensen L S, Mueller T, Tate K R, Ross D J, Magid J and Nielsen N E 1996 Measuring soil surface CO2-flux as an index of soil respiration in situ: A comparison of two chamber methods. Soil Biol. Biochem. 28, 1297–1306.Google Scholar
  16. Jensen L S, Mueller T, Magid J and Nielsen N E 1997 Temporal variation of C and N mineralization, microbial biomass and extractable organic pools in soil after oilseed rape straw incorporation in the field. Soil Biol. Biochem. 29, 1043–1055.Google Scholar
  17. Joergensen R G, Meyer B and Mueller T 1994 Time-course of the soil microbial biomass under wheat: A one year field study. Soil Biol. Biochem. 26, 987–994.Google Scholar
  18. Johnston A E, McEvan J, Lane P W, Hewitt M V, Poulton P R and Yeoman D P 1994 Effects of one to six year old ryegrass-clover leys on soil nitrogen and on the subsequent yields and fertilizer nitrogen requirements of the arable sequence winter wheat, potatoes, winter wheat, winter beans (Vica faba) grown on a sandy loam soil. J. Agric. Sci. 122, 73–89.Google Scholar
  19. Keeney D R and Nelson D W 1982 Nitrogen — Inorganic forms. In Methods of Soil Analyses 2nd. edn. Ed. A L Page. pp 643–698. ASA, Madison, WI.Google Scholar
  20. Ladd J N, Butler J H A and Amato M 1986 Nitrogen fixation by legumes and their roles as sources of nitrogen for soil and crop. Biol. Agrice. Hort. 3, 269–286.Google Scholar
  21. Magid J, Mueller T, Jensen L S and Nielsen N E 1997b Modelling the measurable: Interpretation of field-scale CO2 and N-mineralization, soil microbial biomass and light fractions as indicators of oilseed rape, maize and barley straw decomposition. In Driven by Nature: Plant Litter Quality and Decomposition. Eds. G Cadish and K E Giller. pp 349–362. CAB International, Wallingford, UK.Google Scholar
  22. Mary B, Recous S, Darwis D and Robin D 1996 Interactions between decomposition of plant residues and nitrogen cycling in soil. Plant Soil 181, 71–82.Google Scholar
  23. SAS 1990 SAS Procedures Guide. Version 6, Third edition. SAS Institute, Inc., Gary, NC, USA. 705 p.Google Scholar
  24. Schenk U, Manderscheid R, Hugen J and Weigel H-J 1995 Effects of CO2 enrichment and intraspecific competition on biomass partitioning, nitrogen content and microbial biomass carbon in soil of perennial ryegrass and white clover. J. Exp. Bot. 46, 987–993.Google Scholar
  25. Tottmann D R 1987 The decimal code for the growth stages of cereals, with illustrations. Ann. App. Biol. 110, 441–454.Google Scholar
  26. Voroney R P, Paul E A and Anderson D W 1989 Decomposition of wheat straw and stabilization of microbial products. Can. J. Soil Sci. 69, 63–77.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • H. Hauggaard-Nielsen
    • 1
  • A. de Neergaard
    • 1
  • L.S. Jensen
    • 1
  • H. Høgh-Jensen
    • 1
  • J. Magid
    • 1
  1. 1.Plant Nutrition and Soil Fertility Laboratory, Department of Agricultural SciencesThe Royal Veterinary and Agricultural UniversityFrederiksberg C, CopenhagenDenmark
  2. 2.Plant Biology and Biochemistry Department, RISØ National LaboratoryRoskildeDenmark

Personalised recommendations