|TODD, MISNA - Mississippi State University|
Submitted to: Agronomy Journal
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/22/2022
Publication Date: 7/23/2022
Citation: Adeli, A., Brooks, J.P., Miles, D.M., Todd, M., Feng, G.G., Jenkins, J.N. 2022. Combined effects of organic amendments and fertilization on cotton growth and yield. Agronomy Journal. 2022;1-12. https://DOI.org/10.1002/agj2.21178.
Interpretive Summary: Over the last several years, interest in using poultry litter, relative to inorganic N fertilizer, has increased. Several studies have indicated that productivity of cotton fertilized with poultry litter is as good or better than cotton fertilized with conventional inorganic N fertilizer. However, N and labile C content of manure are less stable, decompose rapidly, particularly in the hot and humid southeastern U.S., and are converted to nitrogen oxide and carbon dioxide, resulting in N loss, decreased N use efficiency and contribute to environmental pollution.Therefore, any management practice to conserve soil N from loss could be agronomically and environmentally beneficial. Biochar and lignite are suggested to play a role in stabilizing soil organic matter via mechanisms such as sorption and physical protection. The high stability, cation exchange capacity, and specific surface area of these soil organic amendments have contributed to their application as a C sequestration tool and their potential in improving soil, air, and water quality. The combined effects of these amendments with fertilization on cotton production is limited in the literature. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effect biochar and lignite either alone or in combination with organic and inorganic N fertilizer on cotton growth, yield, and N dynamics under southeastern U.S. ago-ecosystems.
Technical Abstract: With escalating fertilizer prices, interest in using poultry litter as a source of plant nutrients has increased. However, the rapid decomposition of litter, particularly in the hot and humid southern United States, makes poultry litter vulnerable to loss of nutrients. Biochar and lignite have been proposed to mitigate nutrient loss, particularly N. However, information on the integration of biochar and lignite with poultry litter on cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) growth and yield is limited under southeastern agro-ecosystems. A field experiment was conducted on a Leeper silty clay loam soil from 2017 to 2020 to evaluate the combined effect of poultry litter and inorganic N fertilizer with biochar and lignite on cotton growth, yield, and nutrient utilization. The treatments consisted of a 3 × 3 full-factorial arrangement of amendments and fertilization types organized in a randomized complete block design. Application rates were 6.7 Mg ha–1 for poultry litter, 6.7 Mg ha–1 for biochar and lignite, and 134 kg N ha–1 for inorganic fertilizer. Lignite and biochar were only added once. The combination of biochar and lignite with poultry litter and inorganic fertilizer was positively effective on yield and yield components. Integration of biochar with poultry litter and inorganic fertilizer increased lint yield by 42 and 44% as compared with fertilization alone. Cotton leaf area index increased by 34 and 51% when biochar and lignite were combined with inorganic fertilizer in 2020. The leaching loss of postharvest soil NO3–N was significantly reduced by 66 and 50% when biochar and lignite were combined with inorganic fertilizer, respectively.