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Managing N Availability And Losses By Combining Fertilizer-N With Different Quality Residues In Kenya.

R. Gentile, B. Vanlauwe, C. Kessel, J. Six
Published 2009 · Biology

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The integrated soil fertility management paradigm, currently advocated in Sub-Saharan Africa for rehabilitating its soils, recognizes the possible interactive benefits of combining organic residues with mineral fertilizer inputs on agroecosystem functioning. Residue quality may be a controlling factor for any beneficial interactions. The objectives of this study were to determine the effect of different quality organic residues and mineral fertilizer on N cycling under field conditions in Embu, Kenya. We hypothesized that combining low quality residue with mineral N would reduce potential system losses of N by synchronizing N release with plant uptake. Residue treatments consisted of a control (no residue input), high quality tithonia (Tithonia diversifolia) residue (C to N ratio of 13:1) and low quality maize (Zea mays) stover residue (C to N ratio of 42:1) applied at a rate of 1.2 Mg C ha � 1 . Subplots of each residue
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