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This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 35 No. 2, p. 670-679
    Received: May 1, 2005

    * Corresponding author(s): hmv1@cornell.edu
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Effect of Manure Application Timing, Crop, and Soil Type on Nitrate Leaching

  1. Harold M. van Es *a,
  2. Jean M. Sogbedjib and
  3. Robert R. Schindelbecka
  1. a Department of Crop and Soil Sciences, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853
    b University of Lome, Ecole Superieure d'Agronomie, B.P. 1515 Lome, Togo


Timing of manure application affects N leaching. This 3-yr study quantified N losses from liquid manure application on two soils, a Muskellunge clay loam and a Stafford loamy sand, as affected by cropping system and timing of application. Dairy manure was applied at an annual rate of 93 800 L ha−1 on replicated drained plots under continuous maize (Zea mays L.) in early fall, late fall, early spring, and as a split application in early and late spring. Variable rates of supplemental sidedress N fertilizer were applied as needed. Manure was applied on orchardgrass (Dactylis glomerata L.) in split applications in early fall and late spring, and early and late spring, with supplemental N fertilizer topdressed as NH4NO3 in early spring at 75 kg N ha−1 Drain water was sampled at least weekly when lines were flowing. Three-year FWM (flow-weighted mean) NO3–N concentrations on loamy sand soil averaged 2.5 times higher (12.7 mg L−1) than those on clay loam plots (5.2 mg L−1), and those for fall applications on maize-cropped land averaged >10 mg L−1 on the clay loam and >20 mg L−1 on the loamy sand. Nitrate–N concentrations among application seasons followed the pattern early fall > late fall > early spring = early + late spring. For grass, average NO3–N concentrations from manure application remained well below 10 mg L−1 Fall manure applications on maize show high NO3–N leaching risks, especially on sandy soils, and manure applications on grass pose minimal leaching concern.

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Copyright © 2006. American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, Soil Science SocietyASA, CSSA, SSSA