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Journal of Environmental Biology

pISSN: 0254-8704 ; eISSN: 2394-0379 ; CODEN: JEBIDP

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    Abstract - Issue Oct 2007, 28 (4)                                     Back


Environmental impact of nitrogen fertilization in tea eco-system

R. Saraswathy*1, S. Suganya2 and P. Singaram2


1Central Institute of Brackishwater Aquaculture (CIBA), 75, Santhome high road, R.A. Puram, Chennai-600 028, India

2Department of Soil Science, Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, Coimbatore-641 003, India

(Received: October 10, 2005 ; Revised received: May 15, 2006 ; Accepted: June 30, 2006)

Abstract: To quantify the nitrogen losses through runoff, and leaching under a tea plantation in hilly soil, a field experiment was conducted from October 2001 to October 2002 at United Planters Association of Southern India (UPASI), Coonoor in Nilgiri district. Runoff water was collected in the collection tub on most rainy days but the leachate was collected in the soil water sampler when the rainfall exceeded 150 mm. Higher nitrogen fertilization levels significantly influenced the NO3-N concentration in both the runoff and leachate and it was likely to cause adverse environmental impact at the delivery end. The NH4-N and NO3-N concentrations in runoff decreased with the days after fertilizer application. NH4-N concentration reduced from 10.27 mg/l on the 9th day to 1.72 mg/l on the 34th day after fertilizer application. NO3-N concentration reduced from 23.5 mg/l on the 9th day to 4.32 mg/l on the 34th day after fertilizer application. Nitrogen loss varied depending on the quantity of rainfall and runoff. The NO3-N concentration in the leachate increased with increase in depth (18.06 mg/l at 22.5 cm depth to 20.98 mg/l at 45 cm depth) whereas NH4-N concentration decreased with increase in depth (6.32 mg/l at 22.5 cm depth to 5.79 mg/l at 45 cm depth.


Key words :? Clay loam, Runoff, Leachate, NH4-N, NO3-N concentration

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