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Effect of phosphate rock, lime and cellulose on soil microbial biomass in acidic forest soil and its significance in carbon cycling






Biology and fertility of soils4(3): 329-334

Effect of phosphate rock, lime and cellulose on soil microbial biomass in acidic forest soil and its significance in carbon cycling

Phosphate rock (PR), limestone, coal combustion by-product (CCBP) high in Ca and high organic manures are potential amendments for increasing agricultural production in the acidic soils of the Appalachian region. The objective of this study was to examine effects of PR, CCBP and cellulose addition on soil microbial biomass in an acidic soil based on the measurement of soil microbial biomass P (Pmic) and on the mineralization of organic matter. Application of PR alone or in combination with CCBP increased Pmic. The Pmic was far less when the soil received PR in combination with limestone than with PR application alone or PR in combination with CCBP. Either CCBP or limestone application alone considerably decreased Pmic in the soil due to reduced P solubility. Cellulose addition alone did not increase Pmic, but Pmic was significantly increased when the soil was amended with cellulose in combination with PR. The decomposition of added cellulose was very slow in the soil without PR amendment. However, mineralization of both native organic matter and added cellulose was enhanced by PR application. Mineralization of organic matter was less when the soil was amended with PR in combination with high rates of CCBP (> 2.5%) because PR dissolution varied inversely with amount of CCBP addition. Overall, CCBP had no detrimental effect on soil microbial biomass at low application rates, although, like limestone. CCBP at a high rate may decrease Pmic in P-deficient soils through its influence on increased soil pH and decreased P bioavailability in the soil. Application of PR to an acidic soil considerably enhanced the microbial activity, thereby promoting the cycling of carbon and other nutrients.

Accession: 002815872

DOI: 10.1007/s003740050252

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