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Microbiological and Chemical Characterization of Different Composts
Published May 11, 2003

Composting of agricultural waste is considered particularly important from the point-of-view of environmental protection. Degradation of organic substance results in a significant reduction of waste volume.
The end product of the composting process, mature compost, can be used as soil coverage against excess loss of wastes, for mulching, for... organic manure etc. The problem of composting has come into limelight in environmental studies and in agriculture.
The quality of the mature compost is determined by physical, chemical and biological parameters of the composting process which, in turn, depend on initial composition of the raw materials, the technology, e.g. regular mixing and moistening and on environmental factors. Quality is the key question in compost use.
We studied the composting process in compost windrows of different raw material composition. We measured temperature, humidity content, pH, organic substance content, nitrogen and carbon content.
We counted the number of bacteria, microscopic fungy, ammonifying and cellulose decomposing microorganisms. We directed the composting process with turning weekly (to provide oxygen) and watering (to provide humidity content 40-60%).
We set up windrows of 1 m3 volume from dry plant substances (cornstalk, pea straw, tomato stalk and crop, weeds) and cow manure not older than 1 week. The cow manure was used at ratios of 0%, 35%, 50%, 65% and 100%, respectively.
We measured changes in compost temperature relationship with outside temperature until they were almoust the same. Humidity was 40-60% in most cases.
At the beginning of the process, pH was slightly acidic-neutral; it later becomes neutral-slightly alkaline (pH: 6.93-8.02) as ammonia is liberated from proteins.
At the end of the process, pH decreased again, due to humification.
Organic substance content decreased as microorganisms mineralized them. Organic carbon content decreased gradually due to microorganisms used it as an energy.
Total nitrogen content increased until middle of july and decreased gradually until than.
The carbon/nitrogen rate were higher in the beginning, it decreased until july-august and increased by smaller degree until end of the process.
The number of bacteria was higher in the first three weeks and between june-september. The number of cellulose degrading bacteria was the highest in the first three month, the number of ammonifying bacteria was the highest from the end of may until sepember.
The number of microscopic fungy was significant in the second part of process, after july.

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The effect of soil cultivation systems on organic matter distribution in different grain size fractions of the soil based on three years of experience
Published May 23, 2006

Changes in the physical distribution (particle size and the state stability against decomposition) of the organic carbon pool in tilled layers of Hungarian field soil under different tillage treatments were studied. Three years after starting the experiment, soil samples were fractionated (they were taken in March 2005) by their particle size a...nd density. The treatments caused well measurable, significant effects on two fractions of intra-microaggregate organic matter (53-250μm particle-sized, well and less decomposition-resistant pools) and onto their relative rate in the organic carbon pool of the whole soil.
Different tillage treatments caused different distributions in the organic matter fractions. In regularly intensely cultivated soils evolve different physical structure, particle size-distribution, which reduce the soil fertility and its resistance against outer impacts.

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Evaluation some important microbiological parameters of the carbon cycle in chernozem soils profiles
Published October 24, 2016

Some chemical and microbiological properties of the carbon cycle were investigated in three chernozem soil profiles. The soil profiles originated from a long term fertilization experiment (potato) of the University of Debrecen, Látókép, Kryvyi Rig Botanic Garden (grassland) and a large-scale farm (sunflower) of Ukraine. The results of the or...ganic C-content, total number of bacteria, microscopical fungi, cellulose decomposing bacteria, CO2-production, microbial biomass carbon and saccharase and dehydrogenase activities were compared and evaluated with the help of correlation analyses. Close correlation was found between the organic carbon content and the number of microscopical fungi,, saccharase and dehydrogenase enzymes’ activities, as well as close correlation was found between the dehydrogenase activity and microbial biomass-C and saccharase activity.

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Changes of some soil chemical and microbiological characteristics in a long-term fertilization experiment in Hungary
Published September 5, 2018

Agricultural management practices – directly or indirectly – influence soil properties.

Fertilization rates and crop rotation can strongly affect soil pH, soil nutrient supply and soil organic matter content due to the changes of microbial processes. The objective of this study was to compare the effects of different fertilization d...oses in monoculture and tri-culture of maize (monoculture: only maize grown since 1983, tri-culture: it is a three-year crop rotation system: pea – winter wheat – maize) on selected soil characteristics. The long-term fertilization experiments were set up in 1983 in Eastern Hungary. These experiments are situated west of Debrecen in Hajdúság loess region, on calcareous chernozem (according to WRB: Chernozems).

The test plant was maize (Zea mays L.). One-one pilot blocks were selected from monoculture and tri-culture of the long-term experiments. The observed soil samples were taken in the 30th year of the experiment, in 2013. The doses of NPK fertilizers increased parallel together, so the effects of N-, P- and K-fertilizers cannot be separated.

With the increasing fertilizer doses, the soil pH has decreased in both crop production systems and, in parallel, the hydrolytic acidity has significantly increased. A close negative correlation was proved between the pHH2O, pHKCl and hydrolytic acidity. An increased nutrient content in soil was recorded in every NPK treatment and the available phosphorus and nitrate content increased in higher proportion than that of potassium. Of the measured parameters of C-and N-cycles, fertilization has mostly had a positive effect on the microbial activity of soils. Besides the effects of fertilizer doses, correlation were looked for between soil microbiological properties. Evaluating the ratios among the measured parameters (organic carbon and microbial biomass carbon, OC/MBC ratio; carbon-dioxide and microbial biomass carbon; CO2/MBC proportion), the fertilization rate seems to be favoured by the increase of amounts of organic compounds

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Effects of Tillage Systems on Physical Status and Organic Matter Turnover of the Soil
Published November 26, 2003

The cultivation technology for those plant, that play a key role in arable land production need to be renewed in order to reduce production costs and to protect arable land. The modernisation of technologies can only be achieved by applying appropriate tillage systems. Our measurements were carried out on chernozem soil with lime deposits at th...e Látókép Experimental Station of the Center for Agricultural Sciences, Debrecen University, in long term tillage experiments set up in 1989. We examined the typical physical parameters, the albedo, field capacity, the bulk density of the soil, organic carbon content (humus %) and the measured pH-values in the water solution within the two tillage variations. We have also modelled nitrogen cycle formation in different treatments.
A significant difference occured between the albedos of the two soils, which may be the result of significant amounts of stem remaining on the surface in the case of the reduced tillage method. The yellow, waxy stem of maize reflects 21% of the sun’s rays, especially at the beginning of the vegetation period, when its decomposition has only just started. This delys the warming up in early spring, which delays the sowing time of maize and reduces evaporation. In the two tillage variations, the water management characteristics do not differ practically, the wilting point field capacity are in accordance. In reduced tillage methods, the so-called „plough-pan” can be well measured at 15-20 cm, while in winter ploughing it is at 30 cm. The humus % of the soil does not differ in the two tillage variations, but due to the difference in bulk density this means a different humus and organic nitrogen content. The organic nitrogen content is greater in the reduced tillage method. On the basis of pH value evaluations, we could not detect significant differences in the two tillage variations. The organic nitrogen content of areas where reduced tillage method was applied is higher than in areas where conventional winter ploughing was applied.

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Experiments on the Nutrient Removal and Retention of an Integrated Pond System
Published December 6, 2005

A combined intensive-extensive fishpond system developed for the purification and re-use of intensive fishpond effluent water was studied during a three-year experimental period. The investigated pond system consists of five small-size intensive culture ponds of 1 ha total water surface area with 1.5 m water depth and a 20 ha extensive culture ...pond with 1.0 m average water depth. The water was recirculated between the intensive and extensive ponds with around 60 days retention time in the extensive treatment pond.
Carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus budget and water purifying capacity were described and evaluated by means of regular measurements of nutrient concentrations in the water and sediment. During the three-year test period, 81.5% of organic carbon, 54.7% of nitrogen and 72.2% of phosphorus were retained by the system as a percentage of the total input of each nutrient. A significant amount of the total nitrogen input was removed by the harvested fish, which was much higher than in traditional fishponds or intensive fish culture systems. The efficiency of nutrient removal is clearly indicated by the 27.3% nitrogen assimilation.
Only a small percentage of the total nutrient input was discharged into the environment during fish harvest, which was 9.0% for organic carbon, 13.2% for nitrogen and 12.1% for phosphorus. The combination of intensive and extensive fishponds with water recirculation resulted in significant reduction of nutrient discharge into the surrounding aquatic environment, primarily due to the high nutrient processing and retention capacity of the extensive fishpond ecosystem.

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Optimized balance between crop productivity, restoration and maintenance of vital soil functions and soil carbon sequestration and storage – the SmartSOIL (FP7) project
Published November 13, 2012

Soils provide the most indispensable function of supporting the production of food and feed for a growing human population. At the same time they provide a range of regulating and supporting functions related to climate change and removal of greenhouse gases. The majority of the soil functions are closely linked to the flows and stocks of soil carbon (SOC); low levels of both flows and stocks may seriously interfere with several of the essential soil functions and thus affect the ecosystem services that soils deliver. Soil degradation is considered a serious problem in Europe and a large part of the degradation is caused by intensive cultivation practices in agriculture. The aim of the SmartSOIL project is to link the results of different scientific fields through a holistic and multidisciplinary approach and as a result develop a decision making tool contributing to sustainable development.

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The effect of crop coverage on the daily dynamism of the soil’s CO2 emission
Published December 22, 2010

Nowadays one of main goals of international ecosystem research the measurement of greenhouse gases (CO2, N2O and CH4) in different places. The fluctuation of these greenhouse gases – quantity and trend in the case of CO2 and CH4 – could be diverse with atmosphere because it depends on s...everal effects of factors like climate, soil type, vegetation. In grassland out of the three greenhouse gases which fill a part in gas emission, in the case of CO2 soil and vegetation are the most important factors (Soussana et al., 2007).
In the aspect of global carbon balance grasslands are very important by their large area extension, total carbon content, organic content store (10% of the global carbon storage) (Lemmens et al., 2006). In this summer measurements were carried out to determine CO2 emission of the soil from different soil surfaces like grass covered and bare soil surface during a whole day.

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A szervetlen-C és a szerves-C mennyiségének változása egy homoktalajban, meszezés hatására
Published March 27, 2002

The effect of liming on different organic and inorganic carbon forms in soil was studied in a pot experiment on acidic sandy soil (pH(H2O)=4.38; pH(KCl)=3.42). We used three kinds of liming doses (which were signed M1, M2, M3,). M1 was half of the M2 dose; M2 was the calculated lime dose and M3 was one and the half dose of M2. Lime (CaCO3) was ...mixed into the soil in powdery form. In addition to liming treatments, a uniform N, P and K treatment (1-1-1g N, P2O5 and K2O per pot) was given. Water supply was set up to 75% field water capacity of soil. Pots were watered daily. During the vegetation period soil and plant (oats; Avena sativa L.) samples were taken from each treatment three times (after 6-10-15 weeks). We determined inorganic- and total-C of the soil by Vario EL element analyser (based on dry combustion method) and calculated the organic-C.
The conclusions can be summarized as follows:
– Liming treatments had a significant positive effect on the soil-pH and caused quantitative change of different carbon forms of soil.
– Increasing tendency of liming doses caused more intensive changes in inorganic- and organic-C forms of soil.
– A significant correlations was found between the soil pH and the inorganic-C fraction of soil.
– A decreasing correlation was found between the vegetation period and the organic-C fraction.

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Yield and sward composition responses of a native grassland to compost application
Published August 29, 2017

A major part of the animal products are based on the grasslands, due to the fact that the grassland ecosystems can be found all over the globe. In places where economical and successful crop production cannot be realized, the grassland based animal husbandry can be an efficient way of food production. In addition these ecosystems have an import...ant role in carbon sequestration, and with their rich flora – and the fauna connected to it – in conservation of biodiversity. The protection of nature, and the sustainable agriculture is getting more and more attention in the European Union, but looking at the consumers’ needs, the production of healthy food cannot be neglected either. Because of these facts, the effects of two specific composts - which are officially authorized in organic farming, in Agri-environment Schemes and Natura 2000 programs – on grass yields and sward compositions were investigated in a field trial. The investigation took place in Hungary, on a natural grassland based on solonetz soil. The first type of compost was a natural one (N) without any additional material and the other one was enriched in phosphorus (E). Both was produced by the research institute, made of sheep manure. Three rates of compost (10 t ha-1, 20 t ha-1,30 t ha-1) were tested on 3 m×10 m experimental plots. Every treatments had four replications and both type of compost had four-four control plots too, this way 32 experimental plots were included in the investigations. The yield of the pasture was harvested two-times (in May and in September) and before cutting the plots measurements on botanical compositions were made. Samples for laboratory analysis were also taken. Dry matter yield and crude protein content was measured in laboratory and with the received data the yield per unit area was calculated. Based on the research results we can say that the application of compost in any dose inflicts higher dry material and crude protein yield. The changes were partly due to some positive changes in sward composition, because of the better nutrient conditions. The research results indicate, that use of organic compost can be an efficient way to increase grass yields in a sustainable way.

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Department of Agrochemistry and Soil Science, Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences and Environment Management, Centre of Agriculture and Applied Economic Sciences, University of Debrecen, 138 Böszörményi út, H-4032 Debrecen
Published November 3, 2010

Applying alternative soil cultivation methods based on reduced disturbance of the soil more favourable conditions can be created in order to increase the organic matter content of the soil and the availability of the nutrients for the crops. In complex soil tillage experiment – in 1997 was set on – at Karcag, as the element of the investiga...tion of soil reduced and conventional tillage systems. There is close correlation between the degree and intensity of CO2-emission from the soil and the structural state and organic matter content of the soil. In order to quantify the increased CO2-emission from soil due to soil preserving cultivation systems, in situ CO2-emission of soil was measured by means of an ANAGAS 98 infrared gas analyser. The soil type of the investigated plot is meadow chernozem solonetz in the deeper layers, a soil type that is characteristic
for the Trans-Tisza Region of Hungary. In this paper the results gained from the measurement on different stubbles are published, as we consider stubbles the most suitable state when the effects of different soil cultivation systems on the microbiological activity of the soil can be compared. Experimental data provided information about the length of the time period when CO2 emission increasing effects of soil cultivation are observable. Studying the effect of different soil cultivation methods on the CO2 emission from chernozem soil is indisputably actual and needs more efforts as it can contribute to develop a more environmental friendly agricultural production. The main goal of these measurements was to determine the effect of soil cultivation technologies and certain agrotechnical elements on the factors of the soil carbon cycle.

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Methane emission from Matsuo rice paddy field in light of different fertilizers, costs, profit and carbon credit
Published March 23, 2016

Nowadays global warming is a major issue to our environment. This issue is generated by the modern human activities like industry and intensive agriculture. This research is about methane emission from rice paddy fields. The aim of the study is to lower the methane emission from the field with the help of using different type of fertilizers, wh...ilst we keep in focus the efficient economic operation. The main experimental field is Matsuo paddy field, (Matsuo town, Sanbu city, Chiba prefecture) which is analyzed by the Chiba University’s soil science laboratory, they provided the data for this study. During the study three type of fertilizer was analyzed which are all organic and the control was a regular chemical fertilizer. For all fertilizers the cost and income of the production were calculated and the profit was weighted with the methane emission what a specific fertilizer produced during the cultivation. In the future if the organic fertilizers are in focus than it is necessary to find a new material what can be competitive with the chemical fertilizers in focus of GHG emission or find an alternative way of the usage of methane in biogas production.

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Mitigation of the effect of secondary salinization by micro soil conditioning
Published May 20, 2020

This research has the general goal to meet the customization of agriculture in small scale farming. We are developing a technique using micro doses of soil conditioners and organic material applied in the root zone of vegetable crops. We expected to change the physical and chemical properties of the affected soil, which has been irrigated w...ith salty water. Two different soil conditioners were tested. A lysimeter experiment including 8 simple drainage lysimeters was set up in the Research Institute of Karcag IAREF University of Debrecen in 2017. The main goal was to study the effect of different soil conditioners on the soil endangered by secondary salinization induced by irrigation with saline water. In order to compare the difference between the treatments, we collected soil samples, water samples, and determined the yields. Chili pepper (Capsicum annuum) was used as an indicator crop during one specific agricultural season. The technique called micro soil conditioning is rational because several reasons. The roles of the technique are various, for example it can serve as a source of carbon or a container for soil amendments and can minimize evaporation. We found this technique not to interfere with the chemical reaction or the interaction with the plants. However, the micro doses of soil amendments had the role to minimize the risk of soil degradation and do not significantly influence soil respiration. In addition, by improving soil properties, soil conditioning increases the leaching of the excess of salts from the root zone. In fact, this technique can decrease the cost of the inputs and improves the production of vegetables, and at the same time mitigates the effect of secondary salinization.

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