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Titre du document / Document title

Effects of biodegradable mulch on soil quality

Auteur(s) / Author(s)

LI C. (1) ; MOORE-KUCERA J. (1) ; LEE J. (2) ; CORBIN A. (3) ; BRODHAGEN M. (4) ; MILES C. (5) ; INGLIS D. (5) ;

Affiliation(s) du ou des auteurs / Author(s) Affiliation(s)

(1) Department of Plant and Soil Science, Texas Tech University, ETATS-UNIS
(2) Department of Biosystems Engineering & Soil Science, University of Tennessee, ETATS-UNIS
(3) Washington State University Extension, Snohomish County Extension, ETATS-UNIS
(4) Biology Department, Western Washington University, ETATS-UNIS
(5) Department of Horticulture and Plant Pathology, respectively, Washington State University, Northwestern Washington Research & Extension Center, ETATS-UNIS

Résumé / Abstract

Biodegradable plastic films are desirable alternatives to traditional black polyethylene plastic for use as mulches in agroecosystems. Efforts are ongoing to engineer biodegradable plastic mulches that could be incorporated into the soil at the end of the crop season, and decomposed by microorganisms, ultimately to CO2, H2O, and biomass. Whether changes in soil quality occur during or following biodegradation is unknown. An 18-month study evaluated the effects on soil quality following burial of four potentially biodegradable mulches and a no mulch control in high tunnel and open field tomato production systems across three geographically distinct locations (Knoxville, TN: Lubbock, TX: Mount Vernon, WA). The mulch treatments included: two starch-based mulches (BioAgri® Ag-Film and BioTelo Agri); one experimental 100% polylactic acid mulch (Spunbond-PLA-10); one cellulose-based mulch (WeedGuardPlus; positive control); and a negative control (no mulch). The soil management assessment framework (SMAF) was used to calculate a soil quality index (SQI) according to five dynamic soil properties: microbial biomass carbon, β-glucosidase, electrical conductivity, total organic carbon (TOC), and pH. Within the 18-month evaluation period, the effects of the biodegradable mulches on the SQI were minor, and dependent upon production system and time of incubation at all locations. In general, the SQI was higher in the high tunnel systems for some of the mulch treatments at Knoxville and Lubbock but the opposite was true at Mount Vernon. By the final sampling at 18 months, the SQI was lowest for WeedGuardPlus at Lubbock and Mount Vernon but at Knoxville, the WeedGuardPlus SQI was not significantly different from the no mulch control. Of the five SMAF indicators evaluated, soil microbial biomass and β-glucosidase activity were the most responsive to mulch and production systems, supporting the use of these variables as soil quality indicators for short-term changes due to this agricultural management practice.

Revue / Journal Title

Applied soil ecology    ISSN  0929-1393 

Source / Source

2014, vol. 79, pp. 59-69 [11 page(s) (article)] (3/4 p.)

Langue / Language

Anglais

Editeur / Publisher

Elsevier, Kidlington, ROYAUME-UNI  (1994) (Revue)

Mots-clés anglais / English Keywords

Soil science

;

Ecology

;

Soil management

;

Soil quality

;

Mulching

;

Biodegradability

;

Mots-clés français / French Keywords

Science du sol

;

Ecologie

;

Aménagement sol

;

Qualité sol

;

Paillage

;

Biodégradabilité

;

Mots-clés espagnols / Spanish Keywords

Ciencia del suelo

;

Ecología

;

Acondicionamiento suelo

;

Calidad suelo

;

Cobertura vegetal

;

Biodegradabilidad

;

Mots-clés d'auteur / Author Keywords

Biodegradable mulch

;

Soil quality

;

Soil management assessment framework

;

Localisation / Location

INIST-CNRS, Cote INIST : 26979, 35400050327171.0060

Nº notice refdoc (ud4) : 28456079



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