Eurasian Soil Science

, Volume 51, Issue 12, pp 1507–1513 | Cite as

Different Response of Grain Yield to Soil Organic Carbon, Nitrogen, and Phosphorus in Red Soil as Based on the Long-Term Fertilization Experiment

  • Liu KailouEmail author
  • Li Yazhen


Soil organic carbon (SOC), total nitrogen (TN), and total phosphorus (TP) are essential nutrients for plant growth. Thus, soil amendments that increase the amounts of these nutrients can improve crop yield in poor growing soils such as Red soils in subtropical China, which were classified as Plinthosols in the WRB (World Reference Base for Soil Resources). It is unknown whether any of the three nutrients are more influential than the others on crop yield. A 30-year-long field experiment was established in 1986 to investigate the response of grain yield to changes in SOC, TN and TP levels, identified by regression equations, due to various fertilizer treatments applied to corn crops grown in red soil. Corn yields varied significantly under four different fertilizer treatments. For most of the experimental years, the two fertilizer treatments of application of manure combined with inorganic nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium (NPKM) and a higher rate of NPK (HNPK) fertilizer produced significantly higher yields than the control (no addition of fertilizer, CK) by 441–548 and 380–703%, respectively. Differences between yields increased over time, particularly between NPKM and CK treatments. The long-term application of NPKM increased SOC, TN and TP contents more so than the other treatments and contents were greater than those in the CK by 48.6–57.1, 26.4–37 and 81.6–142%, respectively. There were no significant differences between the treatments with the low and high rates of NPK (LNPK and HNPK). Additional results showed that NPKM raised the C : N ratio and lowered the C : P ratio. The relationships between SOC, TN, TP and grain yield were best represented by the Michaelis–Menten equation rather than the simple linear equation. Moreover, the equations estimated different maximum yields of corn; yields estimated by SOC and TP were higher than the yield estimated by TN. Furthermore, The estimated maximum yield that could be attained is at a C : N ratio of 10.22 in red soil. Therefore, SOC and TP are likely the more important nutrients to consider altering in soil management of red soil.


grain yield red soil long-term fertilization Michaelis–Menten equation 


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Copyright information

© Pleiades Publishing, Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Jiangxi Institute of Red Soil/National Engineering and Technology Research Center for Red Soil ImprovementNanchangChina

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