Integrated soil crop system management with organic fertilizer achieves sustainable high maize yield and nitrogen use efficiency in Northeast China based on an 11-year field study

Yin Wang, Yaqi Cao, Guozhong Feng, Xiaoyu Li, Lin Zhu, Shuoran Liu, Jeffrey A. Coulter, Qiang Gao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

To increase crop productivity while reducing environmental costs, an integrated soil crop system management (ISSM) strategy was developed and successfully adopted in China. However, little information is available on the long-term ISSM effects on maize agronomic and environmental performance. Therefore, we evaluated the effects of ISSM with combining inorganic and organic fertilizers on maize productivity, N use efficiency (NUE) and N balance and losses as compared with farmers' practice (FP) and high-yielding practice (HY), based on an 11-year field experiment in Northeast China. Maize yield in ISSM (11.7 14.3 Mg ha-1) achieved 97.7% of that in HY and was increased by 27% relative to FP. The excellent yield performance in ISSM was mainly attributed to optimum plant population structure and yield components. Annual N surplus in ISSM was only 7 kg ha-1, which was considerably lower than that in FP (52 kg ha-1) and HY (109 kg ha-1). Consequently, ISSM obtained significantly lower N losses and greenhouse gases emissions and higher NUE. In contrast to FP, crop performance in ISSM showing better sustainability and inter-annual stability. In conclusion, ISSM is an effective strategy to achieve long-term sustainable high crop yields and NUE with less environmental costs in the intensive agricultural system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1078
JournalAgronomy
Volume10
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Funding: This study was financially supported by the National Key Research and Development Program of China (2016YFD0200403 and 2016YFD0200101); the National Natural Science Foundation for Young Scientists of China (31501829); the Foundation for Excellent Young Scientists of Jilin Province, China (20180520036JH); and the Natural Science Foundation of Jilin Province, China (20190201117JC).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 by the authors.

Keywords

  • Crop productivity
  • Environmental cost
  • Integrated agronomic management
  • Nitrogen surplus
  • Yield sustainability

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