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Title: Nitrogen and carbon dynamics in grassland soils and plants after application of digestate
Authors: Andruschkewitsch, Meike
???metadata.dc.subject.swd???: BiogasStickstoffBodenmikroorganismusGrünland
???metadata.dc.subject.ddc???: 500 - Naturwissenschaften (Natural sciences and mathematics)
Issue Date: 20-May-2015
Abstract: A better understanding of effects after digestate application on plant community, soil microbial community as well as nutrient and carbon dynamics is crucial for a sustainable grassland management and the prevention of species and functional diversity loss. The specific research objectives of the thesis were: (i) to investigate effects after digestate application on grass species and soil microbial community, especially focussing on nitrogen dynamic in the plant-soil system and to examine the suitability of the digestate from the “integrated generation of solid fuel and biogas from biomass” (IFBB) system as fertilizer (Chapter 3). (ii) to investigate the relationship between plant community and functionality of soil microbial community of extensively managed meadows, taking into account temporal variations during the vegetation period and abiotic soil conditions (Chapter 4). (iii) to investigate the suitability of IFBB-concept implementation as grassland conservation measure for meadows and possible associated effects of IFBB digestate application on plant and soil microbial community as well as soil microbial substrate utilization and catabolic evenness (Chapter 5). Taken together the results indicate that the digestate generated during the IFBB process stands out from digestates of conventional whole crop digestion on the basis of higher nitrogen use efficiency and that it is useful for increasing harvestable biomass and the nitrogen content of the biomass, especially of L. perenne, which is a common species of intensively used grasslands. Further, a medium application rate of IFBB digestate (50% of nitrogen removed with harvested biomass, corresponding to 30 50 kg N ha-1 a-1) may be a possibility for conservation management of different meadows without changing the functional above- and belowground characteristic of the grasslands, thereby offering an ecologically worthwhile alternative to mulching. Overall, the soil microbial biomass and catabolic performance under planted soil was marginally affected by digestate application but rather by soil properties and partly by grassland species and legume occurrence. The investigated extensively managed meadows revealed a high soil catabolic evenness, which was resilient to medium IFBB application rate after a three-year period of application.
URI: urn:nbn:de:hebis:34-2015052048271
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