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Soil Science Society of America Journal Abstract -

Effect of Addition Level and Maturity of Rye Tissue on the Decomposition of a Muck Soil1


This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 22 No. 6, p. 521-524
    Received: Aug 9, 1957
    Accepted: Aug 19, 1958

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  1. G. Stotzky and
  2. J. L. Mortensen2



A Rifle peat was treated at 3 levels of addition with 54- or 82-day-old rye tissue and incubated in the laboratory for 70 days. The tissue was doubly labeled with C14 and N15 which enabled partitioning the source of evolved CO2 and inorganic N between the tissue and the muck soil.

An increase in the level of tissue addition caused an increase in the amount of C lost from the incubation mixture but increased net C retention. Most rapid decomposition of both the tissue and the soil organic matter occurred during the first 5 days of incubation. After 8 days, decomposition of the soil organic matter exceeded that of the tissue. Priming action was insignificant. The percent C lost from the tissue was essentially the same for all treatments.

Considerable immobilization of inorganic N occurred during the early stages of the incubation period. N mineralized from the soil organic matter was immobilized preferentially. An increase in the level of tissue addition caused an increase in the amount of N mineralized from tissue and a decrease in the amount mineralized from the soil. The percent N mineralized from both sources, however, decreased with an increase in addition levels.

Incorporation of crop residues apparently can be effective in reducing subsidence losses in muck soil.

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