Soil Microbial Community Response to Compost Addition to Nicosulfuron Contaminated Soil

Solomon A. Adejoro, Ajoke C. Adegaye, Doyinsola S. Sonoiki


The toxicity of nicosulfuron to none target organisms is its downside, which has generated concerns about the herbicide in spite of its high herbicidal activity. Practices that would facilitate accelerated degradation of this herbicide will certainly be complementary to its use. A completely randomized design laboratory incubation experiment was carried out to examine the potentials of organic and mineral fertilizers to stimulate microbial activities in soil under the influence of the nicosulfuron herbicide. Soil contaminated with the field rate of nicosulfuron was separately amended with compost and NPK mineral fertilizer, and the treated samples were incubated for 56 days at room temperature. Soil microbial activity and microbial biomass C were measured in dynamics for the period of incubation. Eco-physiological quotients were also computed at the end of incubation to determine responses of soil microbes at the community level to the treatments. Application of nicosulfuron alone was found to repress both microbial biomass and microbial activity. Addition of fertilizer however caused these parameters to increase especially during the first 28 days after treatment application. The microbial metabolic quotient was raised by the soil amendments shortly after application with the exemption of NPK treated soil. However, only the soil samples in which compost was present lowered qCO2 at the termination of the experiment. NIC-COMP and NIC-NPK respectively raised and lowered the soil carbon mineralization quotient (qM) measured at the end of incubation. The soil microbial community was also found to be positively affected by the addition of fertilizers as indicated by the Cmic: Corg ratio and the microbial biomass change rate quotient (qC). It was therefore concluded that though the nicosulfuron herbicide at the field recommended rate has potentials to negatively affect the soil microbial community, application of organic fertilizer may help the soil to regain its microbial competence through enhanced degradation engendered by biostimulation of native microorganisms.

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Copyright (c) 2018 Solomon A. Adejoro, Ajoke C. Adegaye, Doyinsola S. Sonoiki

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Journal of Agricultural Studies   ISSN 2166-0379


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