Article CC BY 4.0
refereed
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Effects of Liquid Manure Application Techniques on Ammonia Emission and Winter Wheat Yield

Affiliation
Faculty of Agricultural Sciences and Landscape Architecture, University of Applied Sciences Osnabrück, Osnabrück, Germany
ten Huf, Martin;
ORCID
0000-0001-5579-3798
Affiliation
Institute of Crop Science and Plant Breeding, Grass and Forage Science/Organic Agriculture, Christian-Albrechts-University Kiel, Kiel, Germany
Reinsch, Thorsten;
Affiliation
Institute of Crop Science and Plant Breeding, Grass and Forage Science/Organic Agriculture, Christian-Albrechts-University Kiel, Kiel, Germany
Zutz, Mareike;
GND
127017956X
Affiliation
Institute of Crop Science, Department “Fertilization and Soil Matter Dynamics”, University of Hohenheim, Stuttgart, Germany
Essich, Christoph;
GND
138033986
ORCID
0000-0003-0328-1744
Affiliation
Institute of Crop Science, Department “Fertilization and Soil Matter Dynamics”, University of Hohenheim, Stuttgart, Germany
Ruser, Reiner;
GND
1108124615
Affiliation
Thünen Institute of Climate-Smart Agriculture, Federal Research Institute for Rural Areas, Forestry and Fisheries, Braunschweig, Germany
Buchen-Tschiskale, Caroline;
GND
1018952160
Affiliation
Thünen Institute of Climate-Smart Agriculture, Federal Research Institute for Rural Areas, Forestry and Fisheries, Braunschweig, Germany
Flessa, Heinz;
GND
172294274
ORCID
0000-0001-6046-2803
Affiliation
Faculty of Agricultural Sciences and Landscape Architecture, University of Applied Sciences Osnabrück, Osnabrück, Germany
Olfs, Hans-Werner

Ammonia emissions following liquid manure application impair human health and threaten natural ecosystems. In growing arable crops, where immediate soil incorporation of the applied liquid manure is not possible, best-available application techniques are required in order to decrease ammonia losses. We determined ammonia emission, crop yield and nitrogen uptake of winter wheat in eight experimental sites across Germany. Each individual experiment consisted of an unfertilized control (N0), broadcast calcium ammonium nitrate (CAN) application as well as four different techniques to apply cattle slurry (CS) and biogas digestate (BD). Fertilizer was applied to growing winter wheat at a total rate of 170 kg N ha-1 split into two equal dressings. The following application techniques were tested for both liquid manure types: (i) trailing hose (TH) application using untreated and (ii) acidified (~pH 6) liquid manure (+A), as well as (iii) a combination of open slot injection (SI) for the first dressing and trailing shoe (TS) application for the second dressing without and (iv) with the addition of a nitrification inhibitor (NI) for the first dressing. The highest ammonia emissions (on average 30 kg N ha-1) occurred following TH application of BD. TH application of CS led to significantly lower emissions (on average 19 kg N ha-1). Overall, acidification reduced ammonia emissions by 64% compared to TH application without acidification for both types of liquid manures. On average, the combination of SI and TS application resulted in 23% lower NH3 emissions in comparison to TH application (25% for the first application by SI and 20% for the second application by TS). Supplementing an NI did not affect ammonia emissions. However, decreasing ammonia emissions by acidification or SI did not increase winter wheat yield and nitrogen uptake. All organically fertilized treatments led to similar crop yield (approx. 7 t ha-1 grain dry matter yield) and above-ground biomass nitrogen uptake (approx. 150 kg ha-1). Yield (8 t ha-1) and nitrogen uptake (approx. 190 kg ha-1) were significantly higher for the CAN treatment; while for the control, yield (approx. 4.5 t ha-1) and above-ground biomass nitrogen uptake (approx. 90 kg ha-1) were significantly lower. Overall, our results show that reducing NH3 emissions following liquid manure application to growing crops is possible by using different mitigation techniques. For our field trial series, acidification was the technique with the greatest NH3 mitigation potential.

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