Effects of Different Nitrogen Applications on Soil Physical, Chemical Properties and Yield in Maize (Zea mays L.)


Application of nitrogen (N) fertilizer is one of the most important approaches on improving maize grain yield. However, as is known to all, overuse N fertilizer not only leads to decline of N use efficiency and maize yield, but also leads to potential risk to environment pollution. This experiment was conducted to determine the effects of N fertilizer applications with nine different treatments on soil physical-chemical characters and maize grain yield using hybrid variety Zhengdan 958 in 2011 and 2012. Results indicated that the soil bulk densities of T2 (CK) and T1 were the lowest compared to other treatments in 2011 and 2012, respectively, whereas the soil bulk density of T5 in 2011 and T3 in 2012 were higher than other treatments. The soil porosity and field capacity of T5 in 2011 and T3 in 2012 were lower than other treatments, but those of CK in 2011 and T1 in 2012 were higher than other treatments. The pH values of T3 to T7 were lower than other treatments. These results indicated that the soil bulk densities were increased, whereas the soil porosity, field capacity and values pH were decreased by N application at different stages. N application could increase the N contents of leaf and stem, whereas less or excess N application should not significant improve maize yield. Although the soil organic matter and total N contents of T3 were the highest in both 2011 and 2012, the yield of T4 is the highest in both 2011 and 2012. The application amount, period and times of N fertilizer were important to maize yield.

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Zhong, H. , Wang, Q. , Zhao, X. , Du, Q. , Zhao, Y. , Wang, X. , Jiang, C. , Zhao, S. , Cao, M. , Yu, H. and Wang, D. (2014) Effects of Different Nitrogen Applications on Soil Physical, Chemical Properties and Yield in Maize (Zea mays L.). Agricultural Sciences, 5, 1440-1447. doi: 10.4236/as.2014.514155.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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