Integration of biochar and chemical fertilizer to enhance quality of soil and wheat crop (Triticum aestivum L.)
By: Usman Khalid Chaudhry, Salman Shahzad, Muhammad Nadir Naqqash, Abdul Saboor, Muhammad Subtain Abbas, Faisal Saeed, Sana Yaqoob
Key Words: Dalbergia sissoo, Organic amendment, Loam soil, Field conditions.
J. Bio. Env. Sci. 9(1), 348-358, July 2016.
A wide variety of soil amendments like manures, compost, humic acid and bio-sorbents have been used to make nutrients available to crops as well as to protect them from toxic elements. Among soil amendments, biochar has been known to improve soil health, soil nutrients’ availability to plants and ultimately the yield of crops. A field experiment was conducted by using biochar prepared from Dalbergia sissoo Roxb. wood by brick batch process. Two doses of biochar were applied to soil 0 and 12 t ha-1. Fertilizer rates used in the experiments were 25% recommended doses of fertilizers (RDF), 50% RDF, 75% RDF and 100% RDF alone and with biochar applied under two factorial randomized complete block design in natural field conditions (RDF of NPK fertilizer is 120-60-60 kg ha-1). Soil physico-chemical properties viz., bulk density, particle density, porosity, pH, electrical conductivity, organic matter, soil organic carbon, total nitrogen, available phosphorus, available potassium, soil organic carbon, soil microbial biomass carbon and soil microbial biomass nitrogen were measured from the soil samples collected from 0-30 cm depth. All these parameters varied significantly among the treatments. A combined treatment of biochar and 50% of the recommended dose of NPK was most effective for soil conditioning. Agronomic parameters were also measured by standard methods. Due to chelation of heavy metal ions and availability of nutrients to the soil, yield of the crop may significantly increase due to cumulative treatment of fertilizer and biochar but upto a certain limit.