The box plot experiment in Grossbeeren after eight rotations nitrogen, carbon and energy balances.
The Box Plot Experiment in Grossbeeren was setup in 1972 to investigate the efficiency of diverse fertilization strategies within an irrigated vegetable crop rotation system for three different soils. Here, we report on the long-term effects of applying various organic amendments and different amounts of mineral N fertilizer to soils on nitrogen, carbon and energy balances.
The fertile soils (sandy loam and clayey silt) were characterized by higher yield and N removal potential of plants, higher acceptable amount of N input, and higher proportion of total N input recovered in the soil N storage and the N uptake of plants.
After 40 years, the organic carbon equilibrium in soil has not been achieved. Change rates of organic carbon stocks are still affected by the different initial organic matter level at the beginning of the experiment. Increasing net N supply increased and organic C input decreased net C gains.
According to manifold possibilities to produce energy from presently or former agriculturally used land, energetic evaluation of land use should become more complex to be able to directly compare them. Including energy contents of organic amendments and soil organic matter in the energy balances should demonstrate a first step in this direction.
Ruehlmann, J. 2013. The box plot experiment in Grossbeeren after eight rotations nitrogen, carbon and energy balances. Archives of Agronomy and Soil Science 59 (8), 1159-1176.