Special Issue "Applied Research and Extension in Agronomic Soil Fertility"

A special issue of Agronomy (ISSN 2073-4395). This special issue belongs to the section "Soil and Plant Nutrition".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 10 March 2022.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Lianghuan Wu
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Ministry of Education Key Lab of Environmental Remediation and Ecosystem Health, College of Environmental and Resource Sciences, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310058, China
Interests: soil nutrient cycling; field fertilizer application strategy
Prof. Dr. Xiaochuang Cao
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
State Key Laboratory of Rice Biology, China National Rice Research Institute, Hangzhou 310006, China
Interests: soil fertility; soil nutrient cycling; crop cultivation
Prof. Dr. Wenhai Mi
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
College of Environmental Science and Engineering, Yangzhou University, Yangzhou 225009, China
Interests: soil fertility; soil nutrient cycling
Dr. Qingxu Ma
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
School of Natural Sciences, Bangor University, Gwynedd LL57 2UW, UK
Interests: soil nutrient cycling; field fertilizer application strategy

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

According to United Nations estimates, the world’s population is expected to reach 9.7 billion by 2050. In order to meet the food demand of this growing world population, more effective agricultural management practices are needed to achieve sustainable agricultural development in order to produce more grain with higher soil fertility and lower environmental costs.

We welcome submissions describing research focused on the production of field crops and physical, chemical, and biological changes in the agricultural soil caused by fertilization, soil improvement, tillage (including no tillage, reduced tillage, and direct drilling), irrigation and drainage, and crop rotations.

Cutting-edge research on the soil carbon sequestration and the establish of health agricultural soil through various field management measures is also of interest, as are submissions of papers related to crop production and the improvement of agricultural soil fertility.

Prof. Dr. Lianghuan Wu
Prof. Dr. Xiaochuang Cao
Prof. Dr. Wenhai Mi
Dr. Qingxu Ma
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Agronomy is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • soil fertility
  • carbon sequestration
  • soil nutrient cycling
  • crop production
  • agricultural soils

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

Article
Changes in Soil Organic Carbon and Its Labile Fractions after Land Conversion from Paddy Fields to Woodlands or Corn Fields
Agronomy 2022, 12(1), 29; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/agronomy12010029 - 24 Dec 2021
Viewed by 232
Abstract
Land use change could significantly affect soil organic carbon (SOC) and other soil chemical properties. However, the responses of soil labile C fractions at different soil depths to land-use change are not still clear. The aim of this study was to investigate the [...] Read more.
Land use change could significantly affect soil organic carbon (SOC) and other soil chemical properties. However, the responses of soil labile C fractions at different soil depths to land-use change are not still clear. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of paddy field conversion on woodlands or corn fields on total soil organic C (TOC) and its labile C fractions including particulate organic C (POC), microbial biomass C (MBC), and potassium permanganate-oxidizable C (KMnO4–C) along a 0–100 cm soil profile. Our results indicate that soil TOC concentrations increased by 3.88 g kg−1 and 3.47 g kg−1 in the 0–5 cm soil layer and 5.33 g kg−1 and 4.68 g kg−1 in the 5–20 cm soil layer during 13 years after the conversion from paddy fields to woodlands and corn fields, respectively. In the 20–40 cm soil layer, the woodlands had the highest TOC concentration (12.3 g kg−1), which was 5.13 g kg−1 and 3.5 g kg−1 higher than that of the paddy and corn fields, respectively. The increase in TOC was probably due to the absence of soil disturbance and greater root residue input into the woodland soil. In corn fields, pig manure addition contributed to the increase in soil organic C concentrations. In addition, the proportion of soil KMnO4–C increased after conversion from paddy fields to woodlands or corn fields in the 0–40 cm soil layer, ranging from 39.9–56.6% for the woodlands and 24.6–32.9% for the corn fields. The soil POC content was significantly higher in woodland and corn field soils than in paddy field soils at lower soil depths (5–40 cm). However, there were no differences in MBC contents in the whole soil profile between the woodlands and paddy fields. The KMnO4–C and MBC was the most important factor affecting the CMI values through the whole 0–100 cm soil profile. Overall, converting paddy fields to woodlands or corn fields increased the TOC and labile C fractions in the 0–40 cm soil layer. Future studies should focus on the response of the deeper soil C pool to land-use change. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Applied Research and Extension in Agronomic Soil Fertility)
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Article
Response of Plant Root Growth to Biochar Amendment: A Meta-Analysis
Agronomy 2021, 11(12), 2442; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/agronomy11122442 - 30 Nov 2021
Viewed by 488
Abstract
Biochar is widely used in agriculture to improve soil fertility and plant growth. However, a comprehensive assessment of how biochar amendment affects plant root growth is lacking. This study investigated the change in plant root biomass in response to biochar application, including impact [...] Read more.
Biochar is widely used in agriculture to improve soil fertility and plant growth. However, a comprehensive assessment of how biochar amendment affects plant root growth is lacking. This study investigated the change in plant root biomass in response to biochar application, including impact factors such as the biochar feedstock and application rate, plant type, and soil pH. The Science Direct, Web Of Science, and Scopus databases were employed to search for literature published before 2021. The published papers with at least three replicates of biochar-amended treatments and a control at the same site were selected for meta-analysis. Our results showed that 165 (81.3%) of 203 datasets from 47 published studies indicated positive effects of biochar amendment on root growth with a mean relative increase of 32%. The feedstocks of biochar and its rate of application were the main factors that determined its effects on plant root growth. The increment of root biomass following biochar amendment was the greatest for trees (+101.6%), followed by grasses (+66.0%), vegetables (+26.9%), and cereals (+12.7%). The positive effects mainly depended on feedstock sources, with the highest positive effect (+46.2%) for gramineous, followed by woody plants (+25.8%) and green wastes (+21.1%). Linear regression analysis and SEM (Structural equation modeling) analysis showed that total nitrogen (TN) and available phosphorus (AK) are one of the most important factors affecting the increase of root biomass. These results suggest that biochar can be considered an effective amendment to improve root growth and soil fertility. Biochar feedstock sources, application rates, and plant types should be considered to assess the potential benefits of biochar for root growth and soil quality. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Applied Research and Extension in Agronomic Soil Fertility)
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Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Title: Effects of Manure Combined with Chemical Fertilizer on Nutrients, Enzyme Activities and Rice Yield in Reclaimed Soil under Rice-Wheat Rotation
Authors: Haitao Zhao
Affiliation: Yangzhou University, Yangzhou, China

Title: Changes in soil organic carbon and its labile fractions after land conversion from paddy fields to woodlands or corn fields
Authors: Yan Sun
Affiliation: Xi'an University of Technology, Xi'an, China

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