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This article in AJ

  1. Vol. 61 No. 3, p. 371-374
    Received: Aug 30, 1968

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Effect of Injections of Propane into Soil on Crop Growth1

  1. D. R. Johnson,
  2. J. H. Herbeck,
  3. Jerry D. Eastin,
  4. L. R. Frederick,
  5. J. A. Stritzel and
  6. W. L. Colville2



Liquid propane (C3H8) was injected into the soil of plots for Zea mays (L.), Sorghum, bicolor (L.) Moench, and Glycine max (L.) Merr. with an anhydrous ammonia applicator at rates of from O to 376 liters/ha (O to 40 gal/A). Gaseous propane was injected into greenhouse and growth chamber pots of soybeans and sorghum at equivalent rates. Propane injections produced a small decrease in corn leaf nitrogen percent. No significant influence on corn yield was noted. Sorghum was not affected by propane injections. Soybean root nodulation was increased by propane injections. Propane had no effect on nodulation where nitrogen fertilizer was added and had no effect on soybean yields. Additional laboratory studies using a closed system showed that microbial activity and nitrogen immobiliaztion were directly related to the propane gas concentration in the soil. Propane may have been used as a source of energy by the microorganisms which then immobilized the soil inorganic nitrogen.

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