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Mineralisation effects in grassland (extension to NT1502) - NT1522

Previous research within NT 1502 will provide much information which will improve our understanding of mineralization in grassland soils. This in turn will allow better prediction of the contribution of this complex process to available N pools and therefore reduced potential for losses of N by NO3- leaching and/or denitrification. In order to make maximum use of previous results and to address questions which have arisen during the course of the previous study, an extension of the current project is required to investigate the issues raised to further develop the potential of the results to provide the means of developing practical tools for farmer’s use. With this objective in mind, the present project therefore has the following aims: developing appropriate interpretations of the previous results; contributing to further understanding of the overall impact of mineralization; and defining future research needs.
1. To undertake a comparison of current and modified field methods for determining net mineralization in a range of grassland soils under different soil moisture conditions.
2. To measure net mineralization at 4 depths down to 40/50 cm in a range of grassland soils.
3. To examine net mineralization data from NT 1502 in relation to accumulated soil temperatures (soil thermal units) and other previously determined soil organic matter characteristics and also to test this relationship using N uptake from previous fertilizer experiments.
4. To undertake small plot experiments to determine whether recent fertilizer additions act as a priming process, stimulating enhanced rates of mineralization.
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 1998

To: 1999

Cost: £83,579
Contractor / Funded Organisations
Institute of Grassland and Environment Research (IGER)
Fields of Study
Fertilisers and Nitrate Pollution