Changes of soil nutrients and supply capacities in the piedmont plain of Taihang Mountain during the period of 1978—2008

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    With the termination of national soil test and recommendation initiated in 2005, it is indicated that soil fertility has been improved in different magnitude, especially in the soil phosphorus. Therefore, how to determine reasonable fertilization rates under different soil fertility conditions has become an important issue to maintain or increase yield yet reduce the respective environmental risks. In this study, to examine the current soil fertility, total sampling sites of 851, across 17 counties in the piedmont plain around Taihang Mountain during 2005—2008 (national soil test and recommendation), were determined, where 193 sites were located in Baoding, 401 sites in Shijiazhuang and 257 sites in Handan-Xingtai area. To examine the dynamic changes of soil nutrients of winter wheat-summer maize rotations in the piedmont plain of Taihang Mountain in Hebei Province, historical parameters of soil organic matter (OM), soil total nitrogen (TN), Olsen-P and soil available K in the databases established in 1978 (the second nation soil survey) and 1993 (Changes and control of the arable land top layer in Hebei Province) were extracted. Although the research target of above databases in different period diversified, but large number of investigated sites had same global coordinates, which represented 50% of the total counties within this region. Therefore, the historical correlation between soil nutrient elements and soil fertility can be evaluated. In addition, in order to evaluate the impacts of the changes of soil nutrients on the yield responses of winter wheat and summer maize to the N, P and K fertilization rates, two field experiments during 1996—1999 and 2010—2012 located in the Gaocheng, Shijiazhuang (38°00′N, 114°50′E), a typical winter wheat and summer maize area in the piedmont plain, were selected. Of these two experiments, seven treatments including NPK, -N(PK), -P (NK), -K(NP), 1/2N(1/2NPK), 1/2P (1/2P NK) and 1/2K(1/2K NP) were carried out, where the -N, -P and -K indicated no respective N, P and K fertilizer applied, and 1/2N, 1/2P and 1/2K indicated the application rate of N, P and K were 50% of the respective amount in NPK treatment. Results show that, from 1978 to 2008, the soil organic matter (OM), total nitrogen (TN) and Olsen-P were increased by 7.67 g kg-1, 0.31 g kg-1 and 17.77 mg kg-1, respectively, where the changes during the period of 1993—2008 accounted for 70.8%, 60.0% and 75.5% of their respective totals in 1978—2008. However, soil available K declined by 16.45 mg kg-1 during 1978—1993 but was characterized with an increase of 13.40 mg kg-1 during 1993—2008. Meanwhile, spatial variability of OM, Olsen-P and readily available K increased but decreased for TN. In addition, the relative yield productions of -N treatment for winter wheat and summer maize during 1996—1999 were 51.4% and 54.8% of the NPK treatments, respectively, and the relative yields of 1/2N treatments were 91.0% and 85.4% of the NPK treatments, respectively. After about 10-year excessive N application, the relative yields of -N treatments were increased to 89.3% and 72.8% for winter wheat and summer maize, and the relative yields of 1/2N treatments were also increased to 96.2% and 77.3%. For P treatments, the relative yields of winter wheat and summer maize in -P and 1/2P during 1996—1999 were similar to the respective treatment in second experiment. For K treatments however, only the yield reduction was found in the -K treatment between two experimental periods. In conclusion, excessive fertilization in combination with the return of crop residuals during the last three decades has increased the supply capacities of N, P and K in this region, and as a consequence, crop yield response to the N, P and K fertilization is getting less significant and the fertilizer use efficiencies are declining.

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Liu Jianling, Jia Ke, Liao Wenhua, Gao Zhiling, Lü Yinghua, Jia Wenzhu. Changes of soil nutrients and supply capacities in the piedmont plain of Taihang Mountain during the period of 1978—2008[J]. Acta Pedologica Sinica,2015,52(6):1325-1335.

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  • Received:December 10,2014
  • Revised:April 15,2015
  • Adopted:July 21,2015
  • Online: August 31,2015
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