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Journal of Agronomy
Year: 2006  |  Volume: 5  |  Issue: 4  |  Page No.: 563 - 569

Enzyme Activities and Microbial Biomass Carbon in a Soil Amended with Organic and Inorganic Fertilizers

Saeid Hojati and Farshid Nourbakhsh    

Abstract: Soil equilibrium can easily be disturbed by unsuitable agricultural practices especially in arid and semi-arid regions which are prone to organic matter losses. A comparative study was conducted to investigate the effects of cow manure, sewage sludge (25 and 100 mg ha-1) and chemical fertilizer (250 kg ha-1 of ammonium phosphate and urea) application on Microbial Biomass C (MBC) and enzyme activities in a calcareous soil cropped to corn. Results illustrated that applications of sewage sludge and cow manure increased soil organic C, total N, MBC, L-Glutaminase, alkaline phosphatase, arylsulfatase, β-glucosidase activities and corn yield compared to control and chemical fertilizer treatments. An increasing trend was observed in all studied parameters, as rates of application increased. Manure-amended soils showed higher alkaline phosphatase, arylsulfatase and β-glucosidase activities than that of sewage sludge treatment. Results obtained by discriminant analysis indicated that rates of application were more effective to create discrimination among treatments. It was also understood that β-glucosidase activity was the most useful variable for discriminating among fertilizer types. This study showed that MBC and enzyme activities were significantly correlated with SOC. Significant correlations were also observed between enzyme activities and MBC.

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