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Integrated Nutrients and Cropping Patterns Management on Eroded Soil for Yield and Fertility Restoration

Integrated Nutrients and Cropping Patterns Management on Eroded Soil for Yield and Fertility Restoration

Wiqar Ahmad1* and Farmanullah Khan

1Department of Soil and Environmental Sciences, AMK Campus; 2Main Campus, The University of Agriculture, Peshawar, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pkaistan.

wiqar280@yahoo.co.uk 

ABSTRACT

This paper describes soil fertility and crop productivity restoration measures for an eroded soil. The study was conducted in RCB split plot (4*5 m2) design with; a) cropping patterns (CP); i. cereal-cereal rotation ii. cereal-legume rotation and iii. cereal-cereal+legume intercrop rotation in main plots and b) soil amendments (SA); i. The control (C), ii. Farmers practice (FP; 60:45:0 N: P2O5: K2O), iii. Recommended NPK dose (RD; 120:90:60 N: P2O5: K2O ) and iv. 60:90:60 N: P2O5: K2O integrated with FYM 20 t ha-1 (N1/2PKF) in sub plots. Maize (Zea mays L.) CV Azam (yield data contained in this paper belongs to maize only), wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) CV Uqab and lentils (Lense Culinarus M.) CV NM-89 were cultivated in rotation. Results revealed that during 2006, maize yield did not improve significantly, however, during 2007, grain yield (GY) increased by 17% with N1/2PKF over the RD. Similarly, the cropping pattern effect was significant during 2007 only and the cereal-legume rotation showed 9 and 12% higher GY over the cereal-cereal+legumes intercrop and cereal-cereal rotation, respectively. With regard to soil properties and nutrient status, the N1/2PKF improved the total N, OM and EC by 33, 64 and 11%, respectively, macro (NPK) and micro (Fe, Zn, Cu and Mn) nutrients, from 8% to nearly 2-fold, bulk density (ρ) lowered by 4% and porosity (ƒ) saturation (ω) and available water content (θ) increased by 3.6%, 5% and 11%, respectively, over the RD. The cereal-legume rotation recorded 16, 15 and 32% higher total N, mineral N and soil OM, respectively, whilst it reduced ρ by 3% with increase in ƒ, ω and θ by 3, 11 and 3% over the cereal-cereal rotation, respectively. The study concluded that yield potential and fertility status of eroded soil can be restored by replacing 50% of the required N from organic and inorganic sources with P2O5 and K2O as per recommended dose and including legumes in the traditional cereal-cereal crop rotation. 

 

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Sarhad Journal of Agriculture

June

Vol. 35, Iss. 2, Pages 320-662

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