Inorganic Nitrogen Distribution and Soil Chemical Transformations Associated with Injected Liquid Beef Manure
- J. E. Sawyer,
- M. A. Schmitt and
- R. G. Hoeft
Some producers have reported corn (Zea mays L.) production problems associated with injected liquid manure. These have included uneven corn growth, plant stunting, yellowing and chlorosis. Field studies were initiated in northwestern Illinois on a Derinda silt loam (fine, mixed, mesic Typic Hapludalf) soil where these problems had been reported. This research evaluated inorganic N distribution and soil chemical transformations associated with liquid beef manure (28 and 37 Mg ha−1) injected with and without nitrapyrin [2-chloro-6-(trichloromethyl pyridine]. Injection methods included knife (vertical) and sweep (horizontal). Movement of NH4, or NO3, was limited to less than 12.7 cm from the point of knife injection. High concentrations of NH+4 were found within the knife injection zone compared to low concentrations within the sweep injection zone. Horizontally spreading the liquid manure under the soil surface by sweep injection produced a more uniform lateral distribution of manure and inorganic N (25 cm from the center of the injection point). Nitrapyrin was effective in slowing nitrification with sweep but not knife injection. Conditions known to adversely affect root growth; including incipient toxic levels of NH3(aq), high moisture content, and high levels of NO2, were present for approximately 7 to 8 wk within knife injected manure zones. Root observations indicated growth in soil adjacent to the knife injected manure, but no growth within the zone during this same period. Sweep injection reduced or eliminated the length of time that these conditions existed.
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