Submitted to: Agronomy Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/21/2009
Publication Date: 11/3/2009
Citation: Tewolde, H., Adeli, A., Sistani, K.R., Rowe, D.E. 2009. Fertilizing cotton with broiler litter is superior to inorganic fertilizers in Mississippi soils [abstract]. Agronomy Abstracts. CD Rom.
Technical Abstract: Poultry litter, a mixture of mainly manure and bedding material, is well known as a source of mineral plant nutrients and as a soil conditioner. It has been shown to be an effective fertilizer for row crops, forage and pasture crops, and even for forest trees. The effectiveness of litter as a fertilizer is associated with its ability to supply nearly all plant nutrients. Additionally, litter is known to improve soil physical, biological, and other soil properties that may contribute to better crop performance. Whether litter can improve cotton lint yield beyond that of conventional inorganic fertilizers is a question that has been posed by researchers and crop producers alike. This work summarizes results of a multi-year and multi-location research showing litter to be superior to conventional inorganic fertilizers in certain upland soils considered marginally productive. The research was conducted during 2002 to 2005 at multiple locations in Mississippi. Cotton was fertilized with selected rates of broiler litter and compared against locally recommended rates of inorganic fertilizers. The results showed cotton fertilized with fresh broiler litter produced as much as 26% more lint than cotton fertilized with conventional inorganic fertilizers in soils that historically have low productivity. Litter had comparable effect on lint yield as standard inorganic fertilization in soils that are considered more productive. This multi-location research suggests that fertilizing cotton with broiler litter has the potential to increase lint yield above that possible with conventional inorganic fertilizers in the less productive upland soils and can replace many of the commonly used inorganic cotton fertilizers in all soils.