Volume : 4, Issue : 2, FEB 2018




Two pot experiments were conducted to evaluate the influence of saw dust biochar (SB), gliricidia biochar (GB) and NPK 15:15:15 inorganic fertilizer on soil chemical properties and maize (Zea mays L.) grown in an Oxisol at Iwo in South-western Nigeria. Saw dust biochar and GB were applied at four levels of 0, 5, 10, 20 t C ha-1 and NPK inorganic fertilizer also at four levels of 0, 22.5, 45, 90 kg N ha-1. Application of saw dust biochar (SB) and gliricidia biochar (GB) showed a small but statistically significant (p>0.05) increase in most of the soil chemical parameters of the soil - total N, %OC, available P, exchangeable cations (K, Ca, and Mg) and effective cation exchange capacity (ECEC). But soil pH was increased only at GB application levels of 10 and 20 t C ha-1 while Na did not appear to be affected. These soil parameters in most cases increased with application rates. Application of inorganic fertilizer, however, generally resulted in decrease of the soil chemical variables. The application of either SB, GB or NPK fertilizer significantly stimulated maize development with respect to plant height, stem diameter and dry matter production which generally increased with the application rates of the amendments. Although the biochar-inorganic fertilizer interactions were not statistically significant for any of the plant parameters assessed, it was concluded that complementary use of biochars and inorganic fertilizers for crop production remains a research issue that is worthy of further investigation especially in the field.


Oxisol, Saw Dust, Gliricidia, Biochar, Zea Mays.

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