Slurry and urea applications are part of normal
nutrient management on grassland farms utilizing grazed grass and silage for
animal production. It was hypothesized that management history would result in
a different carbon response to slurry and urea applications for the same soil
type because of differences in soil micro-environment, including microbial
biomass and activity, are formed and regulated by long-term management history.
An Irish grassland soil of the Skeagh Series was sampled in three fields, each
with a long, consistent management history: Soil A was associated with
extensive grazing by horses; soil B with medium intensity grazing by sheep and
cattle, and grass silage conservation; and soil C with intensive dairy cow
grazing. There were three slurry treatments (S1, the control of no
slurry; S2, slurry mixed with soil; S3, slurry added on
the soil surface) and three urea treatments (N1, the control of no
urea; N2, all urea applied at one time; and N3, three
application, 30 days apart, totaling the same amount of urea as N2)
designed to supply 36 g C m﹣2 and 2 g N m﹣2 during an 85
day incubation trial. Soil pH, total carbon, cold water extractable organic
carbon, soil respiration and two C-related enzymes (β-glucosidase and CM-cellulase) were measured. All measured soil
properties showed a significant difference (P<
0.05) by management history, indicating a strong influence of long-term
management on response. β-glucosidase
and CM-cellulase activity showed a strong relationship with soil management
history rather than with slurry or urea additions. It was concluded that
management history was important to C dynamics. Slurry mixed with soil resulted
in a greater soil carbon loss than slurry applied on the soil surface. One
large dose of urea caused greater soil carbon loss than multiple small doses.
Cite this paper
Cui, J. and Holden, N. M. (2017). The Effect of Grassland Management History on Soil Carbon Response to Slurry and Urea. Open Access Library Journal, 4, e4072. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.4236/oalib.1104072.
Bigorre, F., Tessier, D. and Pedro, G. (2000) Significance of CEC and Surface Area of Soils. How Clay and Organic Matter Contribute to Water Retention Properties. Comptes Rendus De L Academie Des Sciences Serie Ii Fascicule a-Sciences De La Terre Et Des Planetes, 330, 245-250.
Xu, M., Li, Q. and Wilson, G. (2016) Degradation of Soil Physicochemical Quality by Ephemeral Gully Erosion on Sloping Cropland of the Hilly Loess Plateau, China. Soil and Tillage Research, 155, 9-18.
Zhong, X.-L., et al. (2017) Physical Protection by Soil Aggregates Stabilizes Soil Organic Carbon under Simulated N Deposition in a Subtropical Forest of China. Geoderma, 285, 323-332.
Yilmaz, E. and Sonmez, M. (2017) The Role of Organic/Bio–Fertilizer Amendment on Aggregate Stability and Organic Carbon Content in Different Aggregate Scales. Soil and Tillage Research, 168, 118-124.
Kogel-Knabner, I. (2017) The Macromolecular Organic Composition of Plant and Microbial Residues as Inputs to Soil Organic Matter: Fourteen Years on. Soil Biology and Biochemistry, 105, A3-A8.
Duarte, R.M.B.O., Fernández-Getino, A.P. and Duarte, A.C. (2013) Humic Acids as Proxies for Assessing Different Mediterranean Forest Soils Signatures Using Solid-State CPMAS 13C NMR Spectroscopy. Chemosphere, 91, 1556-1565.
Shi, Y., et al. (2017) Modelling Hydrology and Water Quality Processes in the Pengxi River Basin of the Three Gorges Reservoir using the Soil and Water Assessment Tool. Agricultural Water Management, 182, 24-38.
Pezzolla, D., et al. (2013) Short-Term Variations in Labile Organic C and Microbial Biomass Activity and Structure after Organic Amendment of Arable Soils. Soil Science, 178, 474-485.
Lalor, S.T.J. (2004) Soils of UCD Research Farm, Lyons Estate. Celbridge, Co. Kildare. Department of Crop Science, Horticulture and Forestry. University College Dublin: Uni-versity College Dublin, 127.