Regular articles

Ammonia volatilization from a Chinese cabbage field under different nitrogen treatments in the Taihu Lake Basin, China

Linan Shan , Yunfeng He , Jie Chen , Qian Huang , Hongcai Wang


Received January 06, 2015,Revised April 25, 2015, Accepted April 30, 2015, Available online August 21, 2015

Volume 38,2015,Pages 14-23

Ammonia (NH3) volatilization is a major pathway of nitrogen (N) loss from soil-crop systems. As vegetable cultivation is one of the most important agricultural land uses worldwide, a deeper understanding of NH3 volatilization is necessary in vegetable production systems. We therefore conducted a 3-year (2010–2012) field experiment to characterize NH3 volatilization and evaluate the effect of different N fertilizer treatments on this process during the growth period of Chinese cabbage. Ammonia volatilization rate, rainfall, soil water content, pH, and soil NH4+ were measured during the growth period. The results showed that NH3 volatilization was significantly and positively correlated to topsoil pH and NH4+ concentration. Climate factors and fertilization method also significantly affected NH3 volatilization. Specifically, organic fertilizer (OF) increased NH3 volatilization by 11.77%–18.46%, compared to conventional fertilizer (CF, urea), while organic–inorganic compound fertilizer (OIF) reduced NH3 volatilization by 8.82%–12.67% compared to CF. Furthermore, slow-release fertilizers had significantly positive effects on controlling NH3 volatilization, with a 60.73%–68.80% reduction for sulfur-coated urea (SCU), a 71.85%–78.97% reduction for biological Carbon Power® urea (BCU), and a 77.66%–83.12% reduction for bulk-blend controlled-release fertilizer (BBCRF) relative to CF. This study provides much needed baseline information, which will help in fertilizer choice and management practices to reduce NH3 volatilization and encourage the development of new strategies for vegetable planting.

Copyright © Research Center for Eco-Environmental Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences. Published by Elsevier B.V. and Science Press. All rights reserved.京ICP备05002858号-3