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Impact of effective microorganisms compost on soil fertility and rice productivity and quality

Authors:
  • King Saud University + Alexandria University

Abstract and Figures

Agricultural systems which conform to the principles of natural ecosystems are now receiving a great deal of attention in both developed and developing countries. An organic fermented fertilizer; EM-compost was produced from agricultural residues; rice-hull and olive dough with beneficial effective microorganisms; EM. The effect of EM-compost on paddy field fertility and rice quality in comparison with conventional farming was investigated. Statistical models quantify the influence of the EM-compost quantity on soil fertility and rice qualities were described. The application of EM-compost shows a significant positive effect on soil fertility and rice yield and quality. EM-compost enhances the fertility of soil by reducing soil acidity; pH, salinity; ECe and Na due to the acidic culture of EM and its anti oxidizing effect. The EM-compost provides the rice plant needs of N, P, K, Fe, Cu, Mn, and Zn without changing their levels in soil. The EM-compost increased the water holding capacity of the paddy soil, which reduced significantly the applied irrigation water; AIW and increasing water application efficiency; Ea. With comparing the application of 4 ton EM-compost/fed and the control (46 N units/fed), the N, P, K and average of micro-nutrients have been increased by extent of 53, 232, 121 and 99%, respectively. With increasing the EM-compost, the grain yield, 1000-grains weight, and husked, milled and head rice were significantly increased. The 4 ton EM-compost/fed recorded the lowest value in immature grains and the highest grain hardness compared with the other treatments. Generally, EM-compost would control chemical fertilizer and could be the best for safe environment.
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Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1067
IMPACT OF EFFECTIVE MICROORGANISMS
COMPOST ON SOIL FERTILITY AND RICE
PRODUCTIVITY AND QUALITY
A. El-Shafei
1
, M. Yehia
2
, F. El-Naqib
3
ABSTRACT
Agricultural systems which conform to the principles of natural
ecosystems are now receiving a great deal of attention in both developed
and developing countries. An organic fermented fertilizer; EM-compost
was produced from agricultural residues; rice-hull and olive dough with
beneficial effective microorganisms; EM. The effect of EM-compost on
paddy field fertility and rice quality in comparison with conventional
farming was investigated. Statistical models quantify the influence of the
EM-compost quantity on soil fertility and rice qualities were described.
The application of EM-compost shows a significant positive effect on soil
fertility and rice yield and quality. EM-compost enhances the fertility of
soil by reducing soil acidity; pH, salinity; EC
e
and Na due to the acidic
culture of EM and its anti oxidizing effect. The EM-compost provides the
rice plant needs of N, P, K, Fe, Cu, Mn, and Zn without changing their
levels in soil. The EM-compost increased the water holding capacity of
the paddy soil, which reduced significantly the applied irrigation water;
AIW and increasing water application efficiency; E
a
. With comparing the
application of 4 ton EM-compost/fed and the control (46 N units/fed), the
N, P, K and average of micro-nutrients have been increased by extent of
53, 232, 121 and 99%, respectively. With increasing the EM-compost, the
grain yield, 1000-grains weight, and husked, milled and head rice were
significantly increased. The 4 ton EM-compost/fed recorded the lowest
value in immature grains and the highest grain hardness compared with
the other treatments. Generally, EM-compost would control chemical
fertilizer and could be the best for safe environment.
Keywords: rice quality, soil fertility, compost, effective microorganisms
_________________________________________________________________________________________
1
Asst. Prof., Ag. Eng. Dept., Fac. Ag. Alex. U.
2
Res., Rice Technology Training Center-Alex., Ag. Res. Center.
3
Res. Biotec., Gen. Eng. Inst., Mobarak City for Sci. Res. Tec. App., Alex.
Misr J. Ag. Eng., 25(3): 1067- 1093
BIOLOGICAL ENGINEERING
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1068
INTRODUCTION
t the root of poverty and hunger is complex social, political and
economic reason. Agriculture is the only dependable vital sector
for economy improvement in the developing countries. There are
many factors for the low yield like high pH, increased alkalinity in soil
and water, very low organic matter percentage and reduced soil useful
microbial activities. In our endeavor to increased food production by any
means, we ignored the vital link in all ecosystems namely the
microorganisms (King et al., 1992). New concepts such as alternative
agriculture, sustainable agriculture, soil quality, integrated pest
management, integrated nutrient management and even beneficial
microorganisms are being explored by the agricultural research
establishment (Parr et al., 1992). Although these concepts and associated
methodologies hold considerable promise, they also have limitations. For
example, the main limitation in using microbial inoculants is the problem
of reproducibility and lack of consistent results (Parr et al., 1994).
The effects of physical degradation like soil erosion, compaction and
water logging are readily apparent. The effects of chemical degradation
like salinity and alkalinity, buildup of toxic chemicals and elemental
imbalance are main constraints on crop performance (Amaral et al., 1995;
Iwamoto et al., 2000). Soils have high range of salinity caused by Na, Cl,
CO
3
, HCO
3
, Cu, SO
4
, NO
3
and heavy metals like Li, Cr and Pb etc. In
biologically degraded soils, one or more significant populations of
microorganisms are impaired, often with resulting changes in
biogeochemical processes within the ecosystem (Alvarez-Cohen et al.,
1992). Under the deteriorated environment the pests and insects attack the
crops and induce plant disease, stimulate soil-born pathogens, immobilize
nutrient and produce toxic and putrescent substances that adversely affect
plant health, growth and yield at the end.
The concept of effective microorganisms; EM was developed by
Professor Teruo Higa, University of the Ryukyus, Okinawa, Japan. EM
consists of mixed cultures of beneficial a naturally-occurring
microorganism that can be applied as inoculants to increase the microbial
diversity of soil and plant. EM contains selected species of
microorganisms including predominant populations of lactic acid bacteria
A
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1069
and yeasts and smaller numbers of photosynthetic bacteria, actinomycetes
and other types of organisms. All of these are mutually compatible with
one another and can coexist in liquid culture (Higa and Wididana, 1991a).
EM is not a substitute for other management practices. It is, however, an
added dimension for optimizing our best soil and crop management
practices such as crop rotations, use of organic amendments, conservation
tillage, crop residue recycling, and bio control of pests. If used properly,
EM can significantly enhance the soil fertility and promotes growth,
flowering, fruit development and ripening in crops. It can increase crop
yields and improve crop quality as well as accelerating the breakdown of
organic matter from crop residues (Higa and Wididana, 1991b).
Rice is highly water consumed. Therefore, it is necessary to search for
increasing the water use efficiency; WUE of rice irrigation. Mishra et al.
(2001) found that grain yield significantly affected by water submergence
depths. Jha and Sahoo (1988) showed that scheduling irrigation every 6
days with depth of 7 cm after the disappearing of pounded water in the
dry seasons gave paddy yield similar to those obtained with continuous
flooding (5 2 cm). This scheduling saved 38-47% of irrigation water
and increased WUE by 60-88%. Dembele et al. (2005) observed that 8 cm
irrigation depth produced highest rice yield of 7.5 ton/ha compared to
submergence depths of 5 and 10 cm.
In rice production, milling quality is an important factor for determining
the farmer income. The market value of rough rice is based on its milling
quality and yield. Milling quality is defined as the head rice recovery after
milling (Brorsen et al., 1984). Many studies have been conducted to
investigate factors affecting milling quality (Jongkaewwattana et al.,
1993), field management (Yoshida, 1981) and environmental conditions
during crop growth (Yoshida et al., 1976). Nitrogen fertilization is one
management tool that affects rice yield and milling quality (Wopereis-
pura et al., 2002).
The objective of this study to produce an organic compost form low
quality of agricultural residues using EM and investigate its effects on
paddy field fertility in term of pH, EC
e
, Na, K, Fe, Cu, Mn, Zn, P and N,
irrigation water efficiencies in term of applied irrigation water; AIW,
water use efficiency; WUE and water application efficiency; E
a
, and rice
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1070
quality in term of weight of 1000 grains, grain dimensions, grain
hardness, empty grain, broken grain, husked, milled and head rice.
MATERIAL AND METHODS
Soil samples of the experimental site were taken every 30cm soil depth up
to 120 cm for determination mechanical analysis, physical and chemical
properties at Mobarak City for Science Research Technology, Alexandria.
Some soil physical properties were determined such as bulk density; BD,
saturated moisture content; θ
s
, permanent welting point; PWP, field
capacity; FC, available water; AW and saturated hydraulic conductivity;
k
s
. Electrical conductivity; EC
e
and pH were determined in 1:5 soil water
suspensions and its extract. Organic matter content; OM was determined.
Soluble cations and anions were measured in the soil paste extracts that
were prepared for each sample. The basic available nutrients values in
soil were measured according to Black et al. (1982) and Page (1982).
Some soil characteristics are summarized in Table 1 and 2.
Table (1): Some soil physical characteristics of the experimental sites.
Soil depth
(cm)
Particle size
distribution (%)
Soil
texture
class
BD
g cm
-3
s
m
3
m
-3
PWP
m
3
m
-3
FC
m
3
m
-3
AW
m
3
m
-3
k
s
mm h
-1
Sand Silt Clay
00- 30 25.98 22.93 51.09 Clay 1.35 0.491 0.303 0.428 0.125 0.64
30- 60 25.01 23.88 51.11 Clay 1.34 0.493 0.303 0.428 0.125 0.68
60- 90 24.10 23.04 52.86 Clay 1.32 0.499 0.315 0.437 0.122 0.60
90-120 23.02 25.00 54.98 Clay 1.31 0.506 0.327 0.448 0.121 0.48
Average 24.53 23.71 52.51 Clay 1.33 0.497 0.312 0.435 0.123 0.60
Table (2): Some soil chemical characteristics of the experimental sites.
Soil depth
(cm)
pH
EC
e
dS/m
Soluble cations (meq/L) Soluble anions (meq/L)
SAR ESP%
Ca
2+
Mg
2+
Na
+
K
+
HCO
3
-
Cl
-
SO
4
2-
0- 30 7.90 0.62 03.0 1.5 1.5 0.2 1.4 2.5 2.3 1.0 53
30- 60 7.06 2.06 07.5 5.0 12.0 0.7 4.9 5.0 15.3 4.8 42
60- 90 7.21 1.90 12.5 6.2 10.2 0.7 5.7 10 13.9 3.3 40
90-120 7.35 2.15 10.0 6.0 16.9 1.1 6.4 5 22.6 6.0 50
Average 7.38 1.68 08.3 4.7 10.2 0.7 4.6 5.6 13.5 3.8 46
Soil depth
(cm)
Available nutrients (mg/kg soil)
OM %
CaCO
3
% P K Fe Zn Mn Cu
0- 30 1.46 271 12.8 5.54 13.00 6.98 0.69 4.1
30- 60 0.02 243 21.7 2.26 4.82 2.64 0.86 0.9
60- 90 2.70 221 21.1 1.36 3.00 22.90 1.20 3.7
90-120 2.03 286 23.0 0.62 1.74 9.88 0.45 2.2
Average 1.55 255 19.7 2.45 5.64 10.6 0.39 2.7
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1071
Preparation of EM Secondary
The 100 litters of EM secondary were prepared by mixing 5 litters of
molasses with amount of water, then added water to reach 90 litters, and
supplemented 5 litters of effective microorganisms; EM, which produced
by Egyptian Ministry of Agriculture. The previous mixture was kept in
dark tanks to an aerobically ferment for one week till pH is 3.5.
Preparation of EM-compost
EM compost is an organic fertilizer prepared by adding 10 litters of water,
100 ml of molasses and 100 ml of effective microorganisms to a
thoroughly mixed material of 16 kg of fine rice-hull and 16 kg of olive
dough. Every 25 kg of the mixture was packing in double plastic bags
then they kept for 2 weeks to ferment aerobically. The pH of the mixture
was measured to chick the complete of fermentation.
Field experiment
The experiment was conducted at Khorshed village and Rice Technology
Training Center; RTTC laboratories, Alexandria, Egypt during two rice
cultivation seasons of 2004 and 2005. The previous crop was wheat. The
whole experimental sites were chiseled, disked, and leveled. Field area
was fertilized with 100 kg/fed of supper phosphate (15%) fertilizer then
the soil was disced by disc harrow to mix the fertilizer. Randomized
complete block designs with three replications were adopted. The plot
size was 5 m × 6 m. Seven levels of fertilizer treatments; 46 units of
N/fed, 23 units of N/fed, 23 units of N/fed + 1 ton of EM compost/fed, 23
units of N/fed + 2 ton of EM compost/fed, 23 units of N/fed + 3 ton of
EM compost/fed, 23 units of N/fed + 4 ton of EM compost/fed and 4 ton
of EM compost/fed were applied to designated plots. There were spread
by grasp with the hand. The units of N chemical fertilizer was in form of
Urea, 46% [CO(NH
2
)
2
]. All plots were transplanted by rice variety of
Sakha-102 after 30 days during the second week of May in both growing
seasons, and were harvested during second week of September in the 1
st
and 2
nd
seasons. The spacing between pits was 20 × 20 cm with 3
transplants per pit. Surface basin irrigation was practice using the
scheduling irrigation every 6 days to remain submerged water depth of 7
cm. Parshall flume was installed in the irrigation channel to measure the
amount of water for each plot according to James (1993). The total
amount of water used during the season was calculated and expressed as
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1072
seasonal applied irrigation water; AIW. In case of the EM compost
treatments, 15 litters EM secondary/fed were applied with irrigation water
weekly to allow the organic matter to ferment quickly, and also to make it
available for the rice in more efficient way. Regular spraying of 3.75 cm
3
EM secondary/m
2
was started from an early age of the plant to build
immunity and protect it from insect and disease attack. Spraying was
conducted at two week's interval until the crop was harvested. To
investigate the effect of the application of inorganic nitrogen fertilizer and
EM-compost on the soil fertility, the soil acidity; pH and the soil salinity
indicated by electrical conductivity; EC
e
were measured after 30 days
(time of rice transplanted) and after 125 days (time of harvesting). Also,
the available level of nutrients; Na, K, NH
4
, NO
3
, Fe, Cu, Mn, Zn and P
were evaluated after harvesting time for different depths.
Rice grain yield; GY
Plants samples of three different areas of one square meter from
each plot
were manually harvested and left three days for air drying. The harvested
rice crop from 1 m
2
was weighted, then threshed and rice grain was
weighted and converted to kg/fed to determine grain yield; GY.
Irrigation water efficiencies
The maximum paddy rice evapotranspiration (water consumptive use);
ET
c
was calculated in relation to reference evapotranspiration; ET
o
and
recommended FAO paddy rice coefficient; K
c
. The ET
o
was calculated
based on the meteorological data of Egyptian Central Laboratory for
Agricultural Climate by using FAO Penman-Monteith equation. The K
c
's
for the first month and second month 1.18 - 1.07, mid season 1.16 – 1.19
and the last month 1.04 were used according to Doorenbos and Kassam
(1979). Water used efficiency; WUE was calculated as a ratio between the
rice grain yield; GY and seasonal applied irrigation water; AIW (Michael,
1978). Water application efficiency; E
a
was calculated as the percentage
between the ET
c
and AIW.
Physical and mechanical properties of paddy
Grains moisture content: For rapid and direct measurement of the rice
grains moisture content, the Infra-Red moisture meter (model F-1A) was
used with an accuracy of 0.1% and a measurement range from 0 – 100%.
The best required moisture content for paddy processing is about 14% wet
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1073
bases, for that all the samples under studies were dried by natural air to
achieve recommended moisture content level.
1000-grains weight (Seed index) was determined using rice grain
counter, (model K131 for 500 grains). Ten random samples from each
treatment were used. The 1000 grains were drawn from the total number
of filled paddy grains from the replicate then weighted.
Grain dimensions; grain length, thickness and width were measured
using the grain shape tester (model MK-100) with measuring range from
0 to 20 mm and an accuracy of 0.01mm.
Grain shape is the ratio between the length and width of grain. It helps to
select the sieves and adjust the clearance between the rubber rollers.
Milling process
Cleaning: Paddy rice was mechanically cleaned at first to remove foreign
materials such as straw, soil particles, mud balls and weed seeds
according to their different shapes, sizes and specific weight. Such
cleaning was done using a precleaning electric apparatus; Cater-Day
Dockage tester (Model TRG). The apparatus consists of four oscillating
and replicable sieves. To ensure high degree of cleanliness, recycling in
the apparatus was done. Mechanical cleaning may be completed by hand.
Husking: To obtain brown rice (husked rice), a Satake laboratory rubber
roll Sheller (model THU-35A) with a capacity of 40 kg/h was used for
removing rice hulls. The Sheller consists of two rubber rolls, each of 100
mm diameter and 35 mm wide. The rolls are driven mechanically by
400W motor and rotate in opposite inward directions. Brown rice, husks
and immature paddy were separated by an automatic aspirator.
Grain hardness was measured using a hardness tester (model KY–140)
with piston of force 196 N maximum and 5 mm
2
pressing cross section.
Brown rice hardness was recorded at the breaking force (Kimura, 1991).
Milling: A Satake testing mill (model TM-05), with an input capacity of
200 g of brown rice in one time, was used. This whitening machine
consists of abrasive roll of 36 cm diameter and rotates at a speed of 450
rpm. The roll rotates inside a fixed cylinder of 38 cm diameter made of
perforated steel. The bran layer is removed from the brown rice as a result
of the friction between rice kernels and both cylinders. Milled rice (rice
after milling which includes removing all or part of the bran and germ
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1074
from the husked rice), broken rice (milled rice with length less than one
half of the average length of the whole kernel) and head rice were
weighted and calculated their percentage obtained from a sample of
paddy for each treatment.
Statistical analysis
The data obtained from the two growing seasons were subjected to proper
statistical analysis using CoHort Software (2005). The treatment’s means
were compared using the least significant difference test (LSD) at 5%
probability level.
RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS
Soil acidity; pH
The pH value of an aqueous solution is the negative logarithm of the
hydrogen ion activity. The solubility of several elements such as Cu, Zn
and Mn are pH dependent, increasing about 100-fold for each pH unit
lowering. Figure (1) and Table (3) show the soil acidity as affected by
treatments. The figure (1) could be divided to three categories. The first
category is the influence of two doses of nitrogen fertilizer. It seems that
the decreasing of the N units/fed from 46 to 23 has a little decrease on soil
acidity. Furthermore, the soil acidity has been slightly decreased during
rice transplanted (30 days) and this decreasing was more after harvesting
(125 days). The second category is the influence of the EM-compost at
the present of 23 N units/fed on soil acidity. The soil acidity continuously
decreased with increasing quantity of EM-compost applications. The
decreasing of soil acidity was more after harvesting than during rice
transplanted. That attributes to the effective microorganism compost,
which is an acidic medium. EM produces organic acids and enhances the
fertility of the soil by bring the pH down (Satou, 1998). A statistical
model that quantifies the influence of the EM-compost quantity; M
(ton/fed) and elapse of application time; t (days) on soil acidity; pH, in the
range of experiments is
pH = 8.5728 - 0.0017 t - (0.0008 t + 0.2787) M +(0.0002 t + 0.024) M
2
, with R
2
= 0.9846
The third category is the influence of the bio-agriculture treatment on the
soil acidity. The soil acidity was decreased from 8.7 (at the initial
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1075
condition) to 7.2 by using 4 ton EM-compost without inorganic fertilizer,
after rice harvesting. These results agree with results that obtained by
Jillani (1997) and Pairintra and Pakdee (1991).
7.0
7.5
8.0
8.5
9.0
Levels of fertilizer treatments
pH
After 30 days
After 125 days
Fitted line
46N/fed 23N/fed 1ton EM+ 2ton EM+ 3ton EM+ 4ton EM+ 4ton EM
23N/fed 23N/fed 23 N/fed 23N/fed
Intial soil pH = 8.7
Effect of
inorganic N
Effect of EM-
com
p
ost
Effect of EM-compost with inorganic N
Figure (1): The soil acidity; pH as affected by inorganic N and EM-compost.
Soil salinity; EC
e
Figure (2) and Table (3) illustrate the effect of inorganic N fertilizer, EM-
compost with 23 N units/fed of inorganic fertilizer and EM-compost on
the soil salinity; EC
e
. These three effects are evaluated after 30 days and
after 125 days. The EC
e
did not change when the chemical nitrogen
fertilizer was changed from 46 to 23 N units/fed. However, the soil
salinity has been slightly decreased to the extent of 5% during rice
transplanted and this decreasing was more after harvesting to the extent of
11%. That could be attributed to the leaching of soil salt during water
application and the nutrients intake by plants from the available adsorbed
chemical on the soil surface. For the EM-compost with 23 N unit/fed, the
effect of increase the EM-compost quantity is to decrease the soil salinity;
EC
e
to the extent of 48% when the EM-compost quantity is increased
from nil to 1 ton after 30 days and to the extent of 60% after 125 days.
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1076
EC
e
of the soil was reduced with the EM treatment (Jillani, 1997).
Compost amendments alleviated some effects on EC
e
of saline soil
(Pairintra and Pakdee 1991). The increasing of the EM-compost
quantities from 1 to 4 ton/fed decreases the EC
e
by about 9% after 30
days and by about 28% after 125 days. EC
e
being an important parameter,
has been studied with regard its prediction. The best correlation is shown
in figure (2), whose EC
e
in (dS/m) is given as
EC
e
= (-0.0037t + 1.2245) M
(-0.0007t - 0.107)
,with R
2
= 0.9887
0.0
0.5
1.0
1.5
2.0
2.5
Levels of fertilizer treatments
EC
e
(dS/m)
After 30 days
After 125 days
Fitted line
46N/fed 23N/fed 1ton EM+ 2ton EM+ 3ton EM+ 4ton EM+ 4ton EM
23N/fed 23N/fed 23 N/fed 23N/fed
Original soil EC = 2.14 dS/m
Effect of
inorganic N
Effect of EM-
com
p
ost
Effect of EM-compost with inorganic N
Figure (2): The soil EC
e
as affected by inorganic N and EM-compost.
The effect of the EM-compost combined with and without 23 inorganic N
units/fed on soil salinity is shown in figure (2). It is pointed out that there
is no value to use inorganic fertilizer in the direction of decrease soil
salinity. While, the using of 4 ton/fed of EM-compost decreases the EC
e
by about 76% after 125 days. That encourages the farmers to recover the
salinity of soil by using the EM-compost. The N requirement of crops
decreased with an increase in soil salinity (Hussain, et al., 1991).
Sodium; Na Available in soil
Figure (3) shows three periods. The first period is the influence of two
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1077
doses of nitrogen chemical fertilizer on Na available in soil after
harvesting. It shows that there is no significant effect. The second period
illustrates that by added 1 ton of EM-compost with 23 N units/fed, the
available Na in soil in (mg/kg soil) decreased by extent of 47.2% and this
trend continue significantly with increasing the EM-compost (Table 3).
The best correlation explain that trend is given by
Na= (213.27) M
-0.1298
, with R
2
= 0.995
While for the third period shows the EM-compost of 4 ton/fed decreased
the Na by extent of 56.3%. These results agreed with Syed et al. (2002),
who stated that the EM treated soil has more beneficial bacteria types
such as Rhodobacter, Pseudomonas, Lactobacillus, Furababacterum, and
Gluconobacter, which have the ability to convert NaCl to protein and
chelates by de-ionzing the salts.
100
150
200
250
300
350
400
450
Levels of fertilizer treatments
Na, K (mg/kg soil)
Na
K
46N/fed 23N/fed 1ton EM+ 2ton EM+ 3ton EM+ 4ton EM+ 4ton EM
23N/fed 23N/fed 23 N/fed 23N/fe
d
Effect of
inorganic N
Effect of EM-
com
ost
Effect of EM-compost with inorganic N
Figure (3): Available Na and K as affect by inorganic N and EM-compost.
Potassium; K available in soil
K is the third most used element in fertilizers. K is known to affect cell
division, the formation of carbohydrates, translocation of sugars, various
enzyme actions, and the resistance of some plants to certain diseases, cell
permeability, and several other functions. Over 60 enzymes are known to
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1078
require potassium for activation (Miller and Donahue, 1990). Figure (3)
and Table (3) show the available of K in (mg/kg soil) as affect by
inorganic N and EM-compost. With the EM-compost, the available K in
soil increased significantly after harvesting. The best correlation clarify
that relationship is specified by
K= (225.3) M
0.1313
, with R
2
= 0.9978
That means at the certain level of the EM-compost could provide the rice
plant needs of K without changing the K available in soil. While, using
the chemical fertilizer only, the K in soil reduced from 255 to 126 mg/kg
soil (Table 2 and figure 3).
Copper; Cu and iron; Fe available in soil
Cu is essential in many plant enzymes (oxidases) and is involved in many
electron transfers. Fe is a structural component of cytochromes, hemes
and numerous other electron-transfer systems, including nitrogenase
enzymes necessary for the fixation of dinitogen gas. Iron is an important
part of the plants' oxidation-reduction. As much as 75 percent of the cell
iron is associated with chloroplasts (Miller and Donahue, 1990). Figure
(4) and Table (3) illustrate the behavior of the available Cu and Fe in soil
with different treatments after harvesting. The available Cu and Fe in soil
10
15
20
25
30
35
40
45
50
55
Levels of fertilizer treatments
Fe, Cu (mg/kg soil)
Cu
Fe
46N/fed 23N/fed 1ton EM+ 2ton EM+ 3ton EM+ 4ton EM+ 4ton EM
23N/fed 23N/fed 23 N/fed 23N/fed
Effect of
inorganic N
Effect of EM-
com
ost
Effect of EM-compost with inorganic N
Figure (4): Available Cu and Fe as affect by inorganic N and EM-compost.
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1079
were slightly decreased with decreasing the chemical fertilizer level.
When increasing the EM-compost, the amount of available Cu and Fe
increased significantly. That because of EM produces Chelating agents
(Siderophores) which make Fe and micro nutrients to be available to
plants. By using the statistical model, the relationships between available
Cu and Fe in mg/kg soil and amount of EM-compost in ton/fed are
described by the following equations in the range of experiments
Cu= (35.786) M
0.1131
, with R
2
= 0.9915
Fe= (21.417) M
0.052
, with R
2
= 0.9565
It is observed that at application of 4 ton EM-compost/fed without N
inorganic fertilizer provided the soil with the highest amount of available
Cu and Fe. That may attribute that the use of chemical fertilizer makes
these microorganisms dormant.
Manganese; Mn, Zinc; Zn and phosphorus; P available in soil
Figure (5) and Table (3) show the impact of different treatments on the
available Mn, Zn and P after harvesting. As single use of the chemical
fertilizer, the available Mn, Zn and P in soil did not change noticeably.
While, with applying EM-compost, the available Mn and Zn sharply
increased. The available P increased gradually with increasing the EM-
compost. That could be attributed to the available the photosynthetic
bacteria in EM-compost, which increases the coexistence and co-
prosperity with Microhiza fungi that released the P and others nutrients
from soil and the compost components. By using the statistical model,
the relationships were described in the range of experiments as
Mn= (7.9597) M
0.1017
, with R
2
= 0.9936
Zn= (4.2059) M
0.1563
, with R
2
= 0.9984
P= 1.5315 + 0.1058 M + 0.178 M
2
, with R
2
= 0.9847
It should be noted that the Zn is essential for numerous enzyme systems
and is capable of forming many stable bonds with nitrogen and sulfur
ligands. Mn is involved in many enzyme systems and in electron
transport. It is believed that organic matter decomposition aids manganese
solubility. P is the second key plant nutrient. P is an essential part of
nucleoproteins in the cell nuclei, which control cell division and growth,
and deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) molecules, which carry the inheritance
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1080
characteristics of living organisms. In its many compounds P has roles in
cell division, in stimulation of early root growth, in hastening plant
maturity, in energy transformations within the cell (Miller and Donahue,
1990).
0
2
4
6
8
10
12
Levels of fertilizer treatments
Mn,Zn, P (mg/kg soil)
Mn
Zn
P
46N/fed 23N/fed 1ton EM+ 2ton EM+ 3ton EM+ 4ton EM+ 4ton EM
23N/fed 23N/fed 23 N/fed 23N/fe
d
Effect of
inorganic N
Effect of EM-
compost
Effect of EM-compost with inorganic N
Figure (5): Available Mn, Zn and P as affect by inorganic N and EM-
compost.
Available nitrogen in soil
Nitrogen is the key nutrient in plant growth. It is a constituent of plant
proteins, chlorophyll, nucleic acids and other plant substances. Adequate
nitrogen often produces thinner cell walls, which results in more tender,
more succulent plants; it also means larger plants and hence greater crop
yields (Miller and Donahue, 1990). Figure (6) and Table (3) show the
available NH
4
and NO
3
as affected by treatments after harvesting. The
figure shows three phases. The first phase is the influence of two doses of
nitrogen fertilizer. It seems that the decreasing of the N units/fed from 46
to 23 has a little decrease on available nitrogen. The second phase is the
influence of the EM-compost at the present of 23N units/fed on NH
4
and
NO
3
. The available nitrogen steadily increased with the increasing the
EM-compost applications. The reason of that increasing could be due to
the presence of the photosynthetic bacteria, which enhances the
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1081
………….
40
60
80
100
120
140
160
180
Levels of fertilizer treatments
NH
4
, NO
3
(mg/kg soil)
NH4
NO3
46N/fed 23N/fed 1ton EM+ 2ton EM+ 3ton EM+ 4ton EM+ 4ton EM
23N/fed 23N/fed 23 N/fed 23N/fed
Effect of
inorganic N
Effect of EM-
com
ost
Effect of EM-compost with inorganic N
Figure (6): Available nitrogen as affect by inorganic N and EM-compost.
Table (3): The statistical analysis for the effect of different fertilizer
applications on some soil fertility.
Treatments
EC
e
dS/m pH Na
mg/kg soil
K
mg/kg soil
30 days 125 days 30 days 125 days
46 N/fed
2.047
a
1.917
a
8.687a 8.590a 389.75a 128.2f
23 N/fed
2.040a 1.910a 8.503ab 8.387a 389.76a 123.6g
1 ton EM+ 23N/fed
1.067b 0.757b 8.300bc 7.997b 205.69b 222.7e
2 ton EM+ 23N/fed
1.033b 0.726bc 8.013cd 7.827bc 195.61c 242.0d
3 ton EM+ 23N/fed
0.947b 0.618bcd 7.887d 7.777bc 189.93d 263.0c
4 ton EM+ 23N/fed
0.972
b
0.544
cd
7.820d 7.707c 178.21e 274.8b
4 ton EM /fed
0.943b 0.512d 7.207e 7.205d 170.53f 283.4a
LSD 0.05
0.143 0.196 0.320 0.272 3.72 3.9
Treatments
Fe
mg/
kg soil
Zn
mg/
kg soil
Mn
mg/
kg soil
Cu
mg/
kg soil
P
mg/
kg soil
NH
4
mg/
kg soil
NO
3
mg/
kg soil
46 N/fed
17.55
f 2.26f 4.82g
22.40
f
1.507
e 99.6e 84.7f
23 N/fed
17.02g 2.05g 4.95f 21.08g 1.433e 99.0e 81.7g
1 ton EM+ 23N/fed
20.70e 4.30e 8.25e 37.35e 2.073d 118.5d 91.1e
2 ton EM+ 23N/fed
21.80d 4.65d 8.45d 38.70d 2.273c 130.7c 113.3d
3 ton EM+ 23N/fed
22.80c 4.90c 8.80c 39.45c 3.437b 136.7b 119.6c
4 ton EM+ 23N/fed
23.89
b 5.25b 9.10b
41.55
b
4.840
a 147.5a 124.1b
4 ton EM /fed
25.20a 5.55a 9.70a 46.00a 5.000a 149.9a 132.1a
LSD 0.05
0.20 0.10 0.09 0.42 0.172 3.2 1.2
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1082
coexistence and co-prosperity with Astobacter in EM-compost which
fixed the air nitrogen. A statistical model that quantifies the influence of
the EM-compost quantity; M (ton/fed) on the NH
4
and NO
3
are
NH
4
= 100.11+ 18.226 M -1.6827 M
2
, with R
2
=0.9883
NO
3
= 79.635 + 18.636 M -1.8246 M
2
, with R
2
= 0.9658
The third phase is the influence of the EM-compost without N fertilizer.
Figure 6 illustrates that there is no importance to apply inorganic fertilizer
in the direction providing N rice needs. That promotes the farmers to
cover the rice needs from nitrogen by applying the EM-compost.
Rice grain yield; GY
Figure (7) and Table (4) illustrates the comparison between the effect of
EM-compost and the conventional N fertilizer on the yield of rice. The
effect of EM-compost with half amount of recommend N fertilizer on rice
yield was decreased the GY by 289.5 kg. As shown in the figure (7), with
increasing the EM-compost the grain yield was significantly increased.
That may be attributed to the EM-compost enhances the fertility of soil by
reducing soil acidity; pH, salinity; EC
e
and Na and provides the rice plant
needs of N, P, K, Fe, Cu, Mn, and Zn. That developed vigorous root
system, which sustained the growth and rice yield. The relationship
between GY (kg/fed) and M (ton EM-compost/fed) can be expressed as:
GY= 4402.6+ 181.81 M - 22.825 M
2
, with R
2
= 0.9985
4300
4400
4500
4600
4700
4800
4900
5000
Levels of fertilizer treatments
Grain Yield, GY (kg/fed)
46N/fed 23N/fed 1ton EM+ 2ton EM+ 3ton EM+ 4ton EM+ 4ton EM
23N/fed 23N/fed 23 N/fed 23N/fed
Effect of
inorganic N
Effect of EM-
compost
Effect of EM-compost with inorganic
Figure (7): Rice grain yield as affect by inorganic N and EM-compost.
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1083
Figure (7) shows also the effect of the decrease of N fertilizer from 46
units to 23 units could be compensated by 2 ton EM-compost/fed. On the
other hand, it is observed that at application of 4 ton EM-compost/fed
without N fertilizer provided the GY greater than 4 ton EM-compost/fed
with N fertilizer. That could be attributed to the use of chemical fertilizers
that cause the decline in soil organic matter and biomass carbon and
decrease in diversity and activity of soil flora and fauna (Satou, 1998). As
a result the chemical fertilizers make the microorganisms dormant.
Applied irrigation water; AIW
Table (4) shows the AIW were decreased significantly by extent of 2.8,
3.4, 6.5 and 12.7% with increasing the application of EM-compost from
nil to 1, 2, 3 and 4 ton/fed, respectively. That decreasing reflects the
increasing of the soil water holding capacity through the different EM-
compost doses. Syed et al. (2002) declared that EM increases soil
aggregation, the water holding capacity, cation exchange capacity (CEC),
buffering capacity and the humus. The EM-compost contains the
photosynthetic bacteria, which enhances the coexistence and co-
prosperity with Microhiza fungi, which responsible on increasing the
absorbing the soil water. It is observed that at application of 4 ton EM-
compost/fed without N inorganic fertilizer saved seasonally 927 m
3
water/fed in comparing with the control treatment (46 N units/fed).
Water use efficiency; WUE
The effect of inorganic N fertilizer and EM-compost on WUE is presented
in Table 4. The maximum WUE was recorded at application of 4 ton EM-
compost/fed without and with N fertilizer and ranging from 0.908 to 0.88
kg GY/m
3
of water. Decreasing the doses of EM-compost from 4 to 3, 2,
and 1 ton/fed resulted in decreasing the WUE by extent of 9.7, 14.1 and
16.5%, respectively. Obtained results confirmed that the effect of 1 ton
EM-compost/fed and 23 N units/fed on WUE is equivalent to the effect of
recommended N fertilizer dose (46N unit/fed).
Water application efficiency; E
a
E
a
were significantly affected by different application of N fertilizer and
EM-compost (Table 4). The maximum E
a
was 65% at 4 ton EM-
compost/fed, while the smallest E
a
was 55.5% without EM-compost
treatments.
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1084
Table (4): Irrigation water parameters as affected by fertilizer treatments.
Treatments
AIW
m
3
/fed
GY
kg/fed
WUE
kg GY/m
3
water
E
a
%
46 N/fed
6220 a 4691 c 0.754 cd 55.5 e
23 N/fed
6199 b 4402 f 0.710 d 56.0 e
1 ton EM+ 23N/fed
6024 c 4567 e 0.758 cd 57.1 d
2 ton EM+ 23N/fed
5987 d 4667 d 0.779 bc 57.6 d
3 ton EM+ 23N/fed
5796 e 4749 b 0.819 b 59.5 c
4 ton EM+ 23N/fed
5413 f 4763 b 0.880 a 64.0 b
4 ton EM/fed
5293 g 4804 a 0.908 a 65.0 a
LSD 0.05
3.52 14.61 0.052 0.64
Physical and Mechanical Properties of paddy
These measurements of quality are useful indicator for total milled rice
yields. Rice is produced and marketed according to grain size and shape.
The physical dimensions, weight and uniformity are of prime importance.
1000-grains weight; W
1000
(Seed index)
A degree of weight where a rice grain is packed in a fixed volume can
offer a good indicator to know grade of rice. Stuffing of rice varies
according to grain shape, grain size, coarseness on the surface, and the
structure of tester. Figure (8) shows the relationship between the 1000-
grains weight; W
1000
and the different levels of EM-compost with other
conventional N fertilizer. It is noticed from Table (6) that there were no
significant differences in W
1000
with decreasing in application of N
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
Levels of fertilizer treatments
1000-grains Weight (g)
46N/fed 23N/fed 1ton EM+ 2ton EM+ 3ton EM+ 4ton EM+ 4ton EM
23N/fed 23N/fed 23 N/fed 23N/fed
Effect of
inorganic N
Effect of EM-
com
p
ost
Effect of EM-compost with inorganic
Figure (8): 1000-grains weight as affected by inorganic N and EM-compost
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1085
fertilizer from 46 units/fed (control treatment) to 23 units/fed as well as
increasing in application of EM-compost from 2 to 3 or 4 ton/fed. The
results showed that 4 ton of EM- compost/fed recorded a significant
increase in W
1000
by extent of 8.2% over the control. The relationship,
which described the effect of the EM-compost quantities; M (in ton) on
W
1000
(in g), could be expressed in the following empirical equation:
W
1000
= 22.658+ 1.3996 M - 0.2073 M
2
, with R
2
= 0.9981
Empty grains; E
Test weight provides a measure of the amount of unfilled, shriveled, and
immature grains based on the size standards established for the grain.
Figure (9) illustrates the percentage of empty grains as affect by inorganic
N and EM-compost. The results turned out that the empty grains; E (%)
decreased with increasing the amount of EM-compost (ton/fed); M. That
relationship could be stated as:
E = 1.6618- 0.1398 ln (M) , with R
2
= 0.9877
However, Table (6) confirmed that there were no significant differences
in empty grains with decreasing in inorganic N from 46 to 23 units/fed or
with increasing in EM-compost from 1 to 2, 3 or 4 ton/fed. On other hand,
application of 4 ton EM-compost/fed recorded a significant decrease in
empty grains by extent of 54.2% under the application of 46 N units/fed.
Grain dimensions and shape index
Rice, unlike most other cereals, is consumed as a whole grain. Therefore
physical properties such as size, shape, uniformity, and general
appearance are of utmost importance. The dimensions of rough grains for
each treatment and the ratio of length/width have emerged in Table (5),
which shows clearly that the using of EM-compost did not change the
dimensions and shape of rice in compared with conventional N fertilizers.
Table (5): Effect of fertilizer treatment on grains dimension and shape
Treatments
Length (mm) Width (mm)
Shape index
46 N/fed
8.240 a 3.392 a 2.432 ab
23 N/fed
8.232 a 3.476 a 2.369 ab
1 ton EM+ 23N/fed
8.024 a 3.428 a 2.345 b
2 ton EM+ 23N/fed
8.306 a 3.372 a 2.465 a
3 ton EM+ 23N/fed
8.310 a 3.460 a 2.404 ab
4 ton EM+ 23N/fed
8.128 a 3.388 a 2.401 ab
4 ton EM /fed
8.272 a 3.476 a 2.382 ab
LSD 0.05
0.288 0.179 0.119
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1086
Husked rice; HR
Figure (10) shows the relationship between the percentage of husked rice;
HR and the effect of different EM-compost levels with other conventional
N fertilizer. Table (6) illustrates that there were slightly differences in
husked rice with decreasing in application of N fertilizer from 46 to 23
units/fed. Application of EM-compost slightly increased husked rice. The
results showed that 4 ton of EM-compost/fed recorded increase in HR by
extent of 5.5% over the control. The relationship between EM-compost
quantities; M (ton/fed) and husked rice; HR (%) could be as:
HR = 79.12 M
0.0067
, with R
2
= 0.974
Grain Hardness; H
Grain hardness is resistant strength just before being crushed by outside
strength. The grain hardness has close relation to grain quality. Generally
the grain with higher moisture content or chalky grain shows low rigidity,
and consequently milling yield will be less. The effect of fertilization
treatments on grain hardness is presented in figure (11) and Table (6). The
grain hardness was decreased by extent 17.4% with decreasing in
application of N fertilizer from 46 to 23 units/fed. While, increasing EM-
compost rates significantly increased the grain hardness. The grain
hardness was increased by extent 30.1% using 4 ton EM-compost without
inorganic fertilizer. A statistical model that quantifies the influence of the
EM-compost quantity; M (ton/fed) and grain hardness; H (N), in the range
of experiments is
H = 4.3472 + 0.9726 M - 0.1173 M
2
, with R
2
= 0.991
Milled rice; MR, broken rice; BR and head rice; HdR
High head rice yield is one of the most important criteria for measuring
milled rice quality. The accurate measurement of the amounts and classes
of broken grains is very important. The effect of inorganic N and EM-
compost on milled rice and head rice are shown in figure (10), while
broken rice is shown in figure (8). Table (6) illustrates that there were
slightly decrease in milling recovery (percentage of milled rice) and head
rice recovery (percentage of head rice) with decreasing in application of
N fertilizer from 46 to 23 units/fed. The half amount of the recommended
N fertilizer gave the lowest milled rice and head rice values, while it gave
the highest broken rice. With increasing the application of EM-compost,
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1087
0.0
0.5
1.0
1.5
2.0
2.5
3.0
3.5
Levels of fertilizer treatments
Eempty and Broken grains %
Empty grains
Broken grains
46N/fed 23N/fed 1ton EM+ 2ton EM+ 3ton EM+ 4ton EM+ 4ton EM
23N/fed 23N/fed 23 N/fed 23N/fed
Effect of
inorganic N
Effect of EM-
compost
Effect of EM-compost with inorganic
Figure (9): Empty and broken grain as affect by inorganic N and EM-
compost.
60
65
70
75
80
85
90
Levels of fertilizer treatments
Husked, Milled and Head rice %
Husked rice
Milled rice
Head rice
46N/fed 23N/fed 1ton EM+ 2ton EM+ 3ton EM+ 4ton EM+ 4ton EM
23N/fed 23N/fed 23 N/fed 23N/fed
Effect of
inorganic N
Effect of EM-
compost
Effect of EM-compost with inorganic N
Figure (10): Husked, milled and head rice as affect by inorganic N and
EM-compost.
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1088
30
35
40
45
50
55
60
65
70
75
80
Levels of fertilizer treatments
Hardness; H (N)
46N/fed 23N/fed 1ton EM+ 2ton EM+ 3ton EM+ 4ton EM+ 4ton EM
23N/fed 23N/fed 23 N/fed 23N/fed
Effect of
inorganic N
Effect of EM-
com
p
ost
Effect of EM-compost with inorganic
Figure (11): the grain hardness as affect by inorganic N and EM-compost.
Table (6): Statistical analyses for characteristics rice grain quality
Treatments
W
1000
(g)
Empty
grains%
Husked
rice%
Hardness
(kg)
Milled
rice%
Broken
grains%
Head
rice%
46 N/fed
23.30bc 2.28a 78.17cd 5.21d 69.04ab 2.89a 66.15b
23 N/fed
22.63c 2.30a 76.05d 4.31e 67.07c 3.08a 63.99c
1 ton EM+23N/fed
23.90b 1.69b 79.12bc 5.31d 68.34bc 2.28b 66.05b
2 ton EM+23N/fed
24.63a 1.57b 79.32bc 5.81c 68.54bc 2.18b 66.37b
3 ton EM+23N/fed
24.93a 1.55b 79.69bc 6.12bc 68.74abc 2.16b 66.58b
4 ton EM+23N/fed
24.97a 1.41b 80.52ab 6.41b 69.07ab 2.09b 66.98ab
4 ton EM/fed
25.20a 1.05c 82.46a 6.78a 70.34a 1.76c 68.57a
LSD 0.05
0.69 0.35 2.29 0.36 1.77 0.30 1.75
milled rice and head rice slightly increased and the broken rice decreased.
The relationship between EM-compost quantities; M (ton/fed) and milled
rice; MR, head rice; HdR and broken rice; BR (%) could be as:
MR = 68.435 M
0.0045
, with R
2
= 0.9732
HdR = 66.122 M
0.0072
, with R
2
= 0.9906
BR = 2.3092 - 0.1662 ln (M) , with R
2
= 0.9964
The result also indicated that application of 4 ton EM-compost/fed
without N fertilizer gave the highest values of milled rice and head rice.
On other hand, 4 ton EM-compost/fed recorded a significant decrease in
broken rice by extent of 39% under the control application (46 N
units/fed) due to the increasing of the grain hardness. That could be
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1089
attributed to the roots became biologically extremely active to releasing
all types of essential nutrients, which more available in the soil treated
with EM-compost.
CONCLUSION
EM-compost is easy to prepare and enhanced bacteria population, which
increase soil fertility and is not only reclaimed soil but it gives also good
production and quality. Comparing the results of the effect of inorganic N
fertilizer and EM-compost on paddy field fertility, irrigation water
efficiencies and rice quality, it is clear that:
1. The EM-compost enhances the soil fertility by reducing pH, EC
e
and
Na. That due to the culture of EM an acidic medium and an anti
oxidizing effect on de-ionized Na.
2. EM-compost increased the N, P and K in soil and they were more
available for plant compared to chemical fertilize.
3. EM-compost increased the absorbing the water, P and others nutrients
on soil due to EM rich with photosynthetic bacteria, which enhance the
coexistence and co-prosperity with Microhiza fungi.
4. EM-compost increased the available nitrogen in soil due to Astobacter
which fixed the air nitrogen. EM-compost makes Fe, Cu, Mn, and Zn
to be more available to plants due to EM produce chelating agents.
5. EM-compost decreased applied irrigation water; AIW and increased the
water use efficiency; WUE and water application efficiency; E
a
.
6. The EM-compost enhances soil fertility and benefit environment to
produce a high rice yield and quality.
7. EM-compost increased the good physical properties of rice quality;
1000-grains weight, grain hardness, husked, milled and head rice.
The results demonstrate that the EM-compost, with their many benefits to
rice quality, controls to the use of N chemical fertilizers. Therefore, the
implementation of this technology, rice quality can be improved and the
environment protected. It offers opportunity to develop new and
improved fertilizer recommendations for rice fertilizer management.
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Yoshida, S., D. Forno and K. Gomez (1976). Laboratory Manual for
Physiological Studies of Rice. Int. Rice Res.Inst.,Los
Banos,
Philippines.
 
       
  
 
 
 
             
           
           
             
               
           
 
          

.         
          
            
          
         
           
 
 / ) (     
     /  
/  /   .
       
      -     - 
 
      -    
  
Misr J. Ag. Eng., July 2008
1093
             
          
           
    
      
             
        .    
            
            
             
           
           
 .
               
             
            
   .
    /       ) 
 (         / 
     %      %
             .
%       %    %
   .%  %  .   
            
           
   .
... EM decompose the organic materials releasing beneficial soluble substances such as amino acids, sugars, alcohol, hormones and similar organic compounds that can be easily absorbed by plants (Higa, 1999) Besides this Jusoh et al. (2013) found that compost with EM has higher N, P K, and Fe content as compared to compost without EM after laboratory analysis, and concluded that the application of EM in compost increases the macro and micronutrient content of the soil. Compost with EM enhances soil fertility by reducing soil acidity; pH, salinity; ECe and Na due to the acidic culture of EM and its anti-oxidizing effect (El-Shafei et al., 2008). Several studies indicated that agricultural use of organic compost with EM addition can significantly increase the grain and biomass production (Lindani and Brutsch, 2012;Ndona et al., 2011;Dehghani et al., 2013). ...
... Some studies showed positive effect and others indicated negative effects. Studies conducted in Sudan and Switzerland showed that effective microorganisms did not improve in most of the measured parameters of crops and soil quality (Mohammed and Elmustafa, 2014;Mayera et al., 2010;Shah et al., 2011), Whereas, studies conducted in china, Austria, Egypt and Pakistan showed that the use of EM with compost, increased crop production and soil fertility (Hu and Qib, 2013;Ndona et al., 2011;El-Shafei et al., 2008). The Ethiopian government has adopted widely making of compost since the last 25 years. ...
Article
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Effective Micro-Organisms (EM) has been introduced to Ethiopia for use in several activities, for example, to increase the organic compost quality. However, there are no studies about effects of compost with EM use in Tigray cultivated with wheat. This paper is aimed to evaluate the effect of compost with EM use on productivity of biomass and grain of wheat cultivated on two places of Tigray region (Maimegelta’s kebele Farmers Training Center (FTC) and Illala research site). A field experiment designed in randomized complete blocks (RCBD) with three replications was conducted to examine the study. The treatments included: (1) control, (2) recommended chemical fertilizer (100 kg ha-1 of urea and 100 kg ha-1 of DAP) (3) Compost with EM (5 t ha-1) and compost without EM (5 t ha-1). The variance analysis showed that there was no significant difference among treatments studied at 5% significant level. Although there were no significant differences between treatments studied, the highest increment in wheat grains yield was obtained for treatments with the use of compost with EM. Therefore, in conditions that this study was performed, compost with EM could be used in agricultural soils of these two areas in order to wheat production and to reduce costs with chemical fertilizer use.
... EM decompose the organic materials releasing beneficial soluble substances such as amino acids, sugars, alcohol, hormones and similar organic compounds that can be easily absorbed by plants (Higa, 1999) Besides this Jusoh et al. (2013) found that compost with EM has higher N, P K, and Fe content as compared to compost without EM after laboratory analysis, and concluded that the application of EM in compost increases the macro and micronutrient content of the soil. Compost with EM enhances soil fertility by reducing soil acidity; pH, salinity; ECe and Na due to the acidic culture of EM and its anti-oxidizing effect (El-Shafei et al., 2008). Several studies indicated that agricultural use of organic compost with EM addition can significantly increase the grain and biomass production (Lindani and Brutsch, 2012;Ndona et al., 2011;Dehghani et al., 2013). ...
... Some studies showed positive effect and others indicated negative effects. Studies conducted in Sudan and Switzerland showed that effective microorganisms did not improve in most of the measured parameters of crops and soil quality (Mohammed and Elmustafa, 2014;Mayera et al., 2010;Shah et al., 2011), Whereas, studies conducted in china, Austria, Egypt and Pakistan showed that the use of EM with compost, increased crop production and soil fertility (Hu and Qib, 2013;Ndona et al., 2011;El-Shafei et al., 2008). The Ethiopian government has adopted widely making of compost since the last 25 years. ...
Article
Effective Micro-Organisms (EM) has been introduced to Ethiopia for use in several activities, for example, to increase the organic compost quality. However, there are no studies about effects of compost with EM use in Tigray cultivated with wheat. This paper is aimed to evaluate the effect of compost with EM use on productivity of biomass and grain of wheat cultivated on two places of Tigray region (Maimegelta’s kebele Farmers Training Center (FTC) and Illala research site). A field experiment designed in randomized complete blocks (RCBD) with three replications was conducted to examine the study. The treatments included: (1) control, (2) recommended chemical fertilizer (100 kg ha-1 of urea and 100 kg ha-1 of DAP) (3) Compost with EM (5 t ha-1) and compost without EM (5 t ha-1). The variance analysis showed that there was no significant difference among treatments studied at 5% significant level. Although there were no significant differences between treatments studied, the highest increment in wheat grains yield was obtained for treatments with the use of compost with EM. Therefore, in conditions that this study was performed, compost with EM could be used in agricultural soils of these two areas in order to wheat production and to reduce costs with chemical fertilizer use.
... Increasing the amount of EM compost from 1 to 3 t significantly increased the grain yield and related parameters in rice [57]. However, in a study by Jamilu and Samina [58], repeated applications of parthenium green manure sprayed with EM solution several times during the growing season did not significantly increase wheat growth and yield parameters. ...
Article
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Compost application is a promising approach to improve soil fertility and the sustainability of plant production, but different types of compost may vary in their efficiency. A field experiment was carried out to evaluate the effect of traditional compost, vermicompost, and material composted with additional effective microorganisms (EM) on faba bean yield and related properties. The compost treatments were applied at three nitrogen levels (18, 27, and 36 kg ha⁻¹) and compared to mineral fertilizer alone or in combination with compost in a two-factor randomized complete block design with four replicates. The economic effects of the different composts were assessed using partial budget analysis. All three composts resulted in significantly higher grain and biomass yields, as well as nutrient uptake into grain compared to mineral fertilizer. This was reflected in a higher number of nodules and higher residual soil nitrogen in the compost treatments. However, EM and vermicompost were most efficient, with a yield of approximately 3.6 and 3.45 t ha ⁻¹, respectively, compared to traditional compost with a yield of 3.1 t. Similar results were found for other investigated properties. The economic analysis revealed that EM compost application at medium and high nitrogen rates was the most profitable among the treatments, with marginal rates of return varying between approximately 790 and 2800%.
... This might be due to the presence of all microorganisms in the consortia which improved the availability of nutrients to the plant to produce higher biomass. Shafei et al. [36] also reported a similar kind of observation from their study previously. ...
Article
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Appropriate irrigation scheduling, along with proper nutrient management practice for direct seeded rice (DSR), are very much essential to attain higher water use efficiency. Huge amounts of municipal waste are been produced every year and these wastes are left untreated and have caused many environmental hazards. However, these wastes can be converted into potential manures for crop production when enhanced with microbial consortia. Concerning these, the current research was carried out to know the effect of compost of enriched municipal soil waste (E-MSWC) with suitable irrigation scheduling on growth, yield, microbial activity, and water use efficiency of the DSR grown under Indo-Gangetic plains during two consecutive rice seasons of 2017–2018 and 2018–2019 at Varanasi, India. From the experiment, it was found that E-MSWC applied at 10 Mg·ha−1 along with 75% recommended dose of fertilizer (RDF) was capable to improve growth, yield, soil microbes, and water use efficiency (WUE) of rice. Amongst different enriched MSWC, the consortia (blend of N-fixing, P and Zn-solubilizing bacteria and Trichoderma) enriched MSWC was found to be the most effective. Concerning, different irrigation scheduling, it was observed that 50 mm cumulative pan evaporation (CPE) based irrigation was the most suitable as compared to providing irrigation at 75 mm CPE. Comparing rice varieties used in the research, the rice variety Swarna has appeared as a better choice in terms of yield and WUE than the variety, Sahbhagi. Thus, it can be recommended that irrigation at 50 mm of CPE in conjunction with 75% RDF + E-MSWC (consortia) at 10 Mg·ha−1 could improve the water use efficiency of rice grown in Indo-Gangetic plains.
... The use of EM in plantation decompose the organic materials releasing beneficial soluble substances such as amino acids, sugars, alcohol, hormones and similar organic compounds that can be easily absorbed by plant. It enhances soil fertility by regulation of soil pH to weak asid, salinity; ECe and Na as well as its antioxidizing effect [2]. Other study had reported that long-term soil amendments with compost EM accelerated wheat growth compared to those without EM mentioned that wheat and maize straw yields productivity were significantly increased in farmyard EM manure plot than in untreated plot. ...
Article
Full-text available
The influence of effective microorganisms (EM), microbial inoculant containing yeasts, fungi, bacteria and actinomycetes was evaluated in field trials of Aerob 1 paddy cultivation in Jasin, Melaka. Aerobic paddy is a new way of rice cultivation in areas where water resources have been scare and affected by the climate change. As water shortage and climate change is becoming severe, the technology of growing rice with aerobic rice systems need to be further refined or developed to ensure the quality of rice production in water-short areas. The objective of this study was to determine the effect of additional EM on the growth pattern, and to evaluate the efficiency of EM uptake on the aerobic plant. This experiment was carried out by using random controlled Randomized Controlled Block Design (RCBD) consisted of three treatments with two replications in four blocks. Aerobic seed cv. Aeron1 was used as planting materials and has been applied by three different treatments of EM during vegetative growth. The treatment for this study was T1 = 1.8 g NPK with urea (control) while T2 was 1.8 g NPK and T3, with 0.9 g NP with 100 mL of EM respectively during 15 (early vegetative stage) and 45 DAS (late vegetative stage). The RCBD experimental design was used with two replications in each treatment in four blocks. There are three series of harvesting (35, 50 and 60 DAS) was conducted throughout this study. The growth parameter studied was shoot and root dry biomass, number of tillers, RGR at each of harvesting. Our finding revealed that the application of EM did not improve plant growth parameter but the growth pattern of T2 and T3 showed steady improvement, although not significant compared to T1. The application of EM at different growth stages did not enhance the relative plant growth rate of Aeron 1 under aerobic condition, but in comparison to T1 and T2, T3 treatment with 50% reduction of NPK and EM could significantly reduce the cost of land management and fertilizer.
... The addition of organic inputs like Glomus fasciculatum @5 g/rhizome, Trichoderma harzianum 1.5%, Panchgavya @ 3%, Amrit pani @ 3%, Dry residue mulch, Agnihotra ash @ 3%, Jeevamrutha @ 3% and FYM: 2 kg/ m 2 helps improving biochemical properties of soil (Sushma et al., 2012) [30] . The organic fermented fertilizer; EM-compost on paddy field decreases EC of soil (El-Shafei et al., 2008) [9] . The combined application of compost (50%) + VC (50%) + GLM (Gliricidia) with surface application of Jeevamrutha @ 500 l ha -1 recorded significantly higher soil organic carbon by 6.0 g kg -1 and Potassium (Channagoudra and Babalad, 2012) [4] . ...
Article
It is necessary to study soil health in terms of soil nutrient properties, soil microbial activity and diversity in conventionally and organically managed field for sustainable development in agriculture. In present investigation, different fermented organic inputs like farm yard manure, Beejamruth and Jeevamruth on soil nutrient parameters, mycoflora population and species diversity in Cotton field for three successive years. The soil amendments with organic inputs increased soil nutrient parameters like improvement in organic carbon (OC), Phosphorus (P), Potassium (K), water holding capacity (WHC) and positive decrease in soil pH and electrical conductivity over inorganic farming. The application of organic inputs enhances mycoflora colony forming unit (CFU) and more species diversity as compared to inorganic farming. From result it is confirmed that for maintenance of soil health i.e. soil fertility and microbial diversity, organic inputs is effective alternative to reduce the loss of over use of inorganic inputs towards sustainable and eco-friendly agricultural development for future.
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Bioremediation of alkylbenzenes, including toluene, ethylbenzene and xylenes, was performed using fermentable aromatic sources and electron mediators by Bacillus cereus 301 in a limited oxygen state. The fermentation of small fermentable aromatic melanoids from cow manure as soluble humus hydrolysates or sugarcane molasses as saccharine, glucose and limited basal medium was compared. Thus, an evaluation model of exponential decline against a control was incorporated for interpretation of remedial data. The significance of the present strategy for constructing multivariant effects of electron donors could be objectively judged by pattern comparison with the short-term data analyzed. Thus, grafted aromatics as methyl-or ethylbenzene require much more microbial reaction time, even with mixed aromatic donors or stronger electron donors such as methanol in the original reduced medium, as indicated in the scatter chart. However, completion of the remedial time was needed by the kinetic simulation, and even low, smooth data were expressed. Among the exponential decay curves indicated, the carbon sources in the mix were favorably expressed. The smooth pattern indicated that fermentations with glucose and molasses showed lower remedial activity than melanoids or the indole series. The vigor increase was better for melanoid carbon in the initial fermentation of 24 h, while molasses increased later at 72 h and was more quenched by amending indole acetic acid (IAA) or indole expression. The molecular interaction of the electron mediator indole acetic acid in most trials indicated a quenched effect on toluene and ethylbenzene degradation, even when mixed with the original reducing medium, but expressed better with molasses in both kinetic simulations and growth effects. Thus, combining electron mediators such as IAA for Bacillus may offer a new degradation route for the metabolite alkylbenzene, which is worth further exploration for environmental aromatic waste remediation and combined restoration strategies.
Chapter
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Organic waste can be converted to compost for sustaining soil health by microbial activities to improve its physiochemical properties. Compost is called as Gardener’s Gold and a vital partner in enhancing crop productivity on a sustainable basis. Composting is helpful to reduce the volume of wastes and in managing landfills through recycling and reusing of organic waste. Vermicompost is also a type of compost utilizing worms for organic wastes disintegration. Composting can be categorized as an aerobic and anaerobic process either carried out in the existence of air or done in controlled air condition. In the aerobic process, it can be grouped into heap, aerated window, and in-vessel, whereas in anaerobic conditions, it is classified into stacks or pile, bokashi, and submerged composting. Nowadays, mechanical composter is available, which is cost effective in terms of time and labor-saving. Compost benefits soil in various ways, such as reducing soil’s bulk density and improve water holding capacity, in addition to having an antagonistic effect on pests. The addition of compost in soil enhances microbial activities that consequently trigger mineralization and recycling of organic substances, thereby increases crop productivity. The biochemical changes that occur during decomposition are described on the basis of different phases like the latent phase (microbes are acclimatized and colonized in the compost heap), growth phase, thermophilic phase, and maturation phase. Compost can be enriched through suitable strains of beneficial microbes, inorganic fertilizers, or other suitable additives. Keeping in view the importance of biochemical reactions involved in the process of composting, the aim of this chapter is to highlight the basic understanding of composting biochemistry, its phases, and, finally, its role in sustainable agriculture.
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Quantification of fertilizers losses is important to ensure sustainability of soil fertility, surface and ground water resources and for the development of crop nutrient management. Due to evaluation the effect of organic and chemical fertilizers under different irrigation regimes on chemical properties of soil, a split plot experiment in a randomized complete block design with three replications was conducted at Rice Research Institute of Iran, during 2013 and 2014. Irrigation regimes were 1.3, 1 and0.7 times of evaporation from evaporation pan as the main plot while six different kinds of fertilizers as the sub plots,C1= no fertilizer, C2=N60- P30- K60 kg.ha-1, C3= C2 + compost (5 t.ha-1), C4= N60 kg.ha-1+ compost (5 t.ha-1), C5= P30- K60 kg.ha-1) + compost (5 t.ha-1), and C6= compost (5 t.ha-1). Soil water extractions were gathered in 15, 25 and 50 days after seedling (i.e. 4 to 5 days after urea fertilizerapplication) and measured their salinity, pH, total nitrogen and potassium. The results showed that despite the significant effects of treatments on measured properties, the amount of irrigation water will be saved 21.18 and 42.46 percent by changing the irrigation method from flooded to 1 and 0.7 of evaporation, respectively. Using compost instead of chemical fertilizers in the soil will be reduced 39.19 percent of total nitrogen and 48.15 percent of total potassium in the soil extraction. The results of this research indicated that using a combination of compost (5 t.ha-1) and nitrogen (60 kg.ha-1) together with irrigation regime of one times evaporation from pan can save water and protect the environment and at the same time also produced the highest yield.
Chapter
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Deficit irrigation (DI) is an optimization strategy whereby net returns are maximized by reducing the amount of irrigation water; crops are deliberately allowed to sustain some degree of water deficit and yield reduction. This technique is not usually adopted as a practical alternative to full irrigation by either academics or practitioners. The major obstacles are that DI involves the use of precision irrigation and some risks associated with the uncertainty of the knowledge required. Furthermore, there is a certain amount of confusion regarding the DI concept. A review of about 100 papers dealing with DI recently published in major international journals has shown that only a few papers use the concept of DI in its complete sense (e.g., both the agronomic and economic aspects). A number of papers only deal with the physiological and agronomical aspects of DI or concern techniques such as Regulated Deficit Irrigation (RDI) and Partial Root Drying (PRD). The chapter includes three main parts: i) a theoretical review of the principal water management strategies under deficit conditions (e.g., conventional DI, RDI, PRD, etc.); ii) a review of the most recent case studies cited in the literature on different aspects of DI application at both farm and irrigation district level; and iii) a description of recent experimental research conducted by the authors in Sicily (Italy) that integrates agronomic, engineering and economic aspects of DI at farm level. Most of the literature on DI reviewed here show, in general, quite positive effects from DI application, mostly evidenced when the economics of DI is included in the research approach and when the application concerns planning purposes over large areas.
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In rice (Oryza sativa L.) production, both grain yield and milling quality play an important role in determining the grower's income. Nitrogen input is essential in maintaining a desirable yield, but its effect on rice milling quality is less clear. This study examined optimal N input for rice milling quality and the combined effect of N and grain moisture at harvest on both grain yield and head rice yield. Experiments were conducted in Californiat the Rice Experiment Station, Butte County, on three cultivars (S201, M201, and L202) during the 1987 and 1988 growing seasons to determine the effects and optimum levels of N and grain moisture at harvest on milling quality. Results showed that the optimal harvest grain moisture to produce the maximum head rice yield depended on the levels of N applied and ranged between 220 and 270 g kg⁻¹ for S201, 210 to 270 g kg⁻¹ for M201, and 200 to 250 g kg⁻¹ for L202. The optimal N level for maximum head rice yield was 125 kg ha⁻¹ for S201, 112 kg ha⁻¹ for M201, and 130 kg ha⁻¹ for L202. These optimum N rates fell within the lower half region of the required N for 0.95 confidence of producing the maximum grain yield. Thus, optimum N inputs for head rice yields are also likely to produce maximum grain yields for the cultivars studied. These findings will greatly simplify the management requirement on N application for California rice farming. Please view the pdf by using the Full Text (PDF) link under 'View' to the left. Copyright © . .
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The effect of an additional nitrogen (N) application of 30 kg N ha−1 at booting on rice yield and grain quality was investigated with 30 farmers in the Senegal River valley during the 1997 wet season (WS) and 23 farmers during the 1998 dry season (DS). Rice yields increased significantly as a result of an extra late N application on top of two N-dressings with a total of about 120 kg N ha−1 in farmer fields. Yield gains were about 1.0 t ha−1 during the 1998 DS and about 0.4 t ha−1 during the 1997 WS. Grain quality was improved through a higher milling recovery (3% increase in both seasons) and a higher percentage of head rice (30% higher in the 1997 WS and 60% higher in the 1998 DS). Benefit to cost ratios of the third nitrogen application for farmers ranged from 2.8 in the WS to 5.4 in the DS. Sorting milled rice resulted in net additional benefits for rice millers, especially in the DS, due to a higher head rice ratio. It was concluded that a third N application can raise both yield levels and grain quality in the Senegal River valley, with potential benefits for farmers and rice millers.
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The beneficial effects of effective microorganisms (EM) on plant growth, yield, and quality have been consistently demonstrated. However, there are still questions about which EM cultures, or combinations thereof, are most effective for alleviating certain chemical, physical, and microbiological problems in soils. In the study reported here, EM cultures increased the number of Enterobacter spp. and starch digesting bacteria in soil. A combination of EM 2. 3. 4 markedly suppressed the number of Verticillium, Thielaviopsis, and Fusarium fungal species that are destructive soil borne plant pathogens. Some of the EM cultures significantly increased the population of Trichoderma (EM 2, EM 3, EM 2.3) and Penicillium (EM 3, EM 2. 3, EM 2. 3. 4) species that are known to suppress plant pathogenic fungi in soils: Soil physical properties, including cultivation depth and porosity, were generally improved by EM treatment. EM 3, EM 4, and EM 3. 4 effectively suppressed nematode damage on tomato plants. With the exception of EM 2, all other EM cultures appeared to either suppress insect damage or heal fruit injuries on tomato caused by insects. Tomato yields obtained with EM 3, EM 4, and EM 2. 3 were comparable to, though less than, the fertilized control. However, the amount of marketable fruit was considerably greater for these EM treatments than for the fertilized plot.
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The occurrence and distribution of Groups I and II methanotrophs and their potential impact on denitrification were studied in a diffusion column model system simulating CH4 and O2 sources and delivery in the environment. We used NO3−- or NH4+-containing mineral salts media and three different inoculum sources: a swamp soil, a lake sediment and a cultivated humisol. The methylotrophic community structure which developed in the diffusion columns was characterized using oligodeoxynucleotide probes specific for ribulose monophosphate pathway (Group I; 10γ probe) and serine pathway (Group II; 9α probe) methylotrophs. Methanotrophs that grew near the top of the columns in zones of low CH4 and high O2 concentration, were generally from Group I; those growing at the bottom of the columns in zones of high CH4 and low O2 concentration were from Group II. Only in the humisol were both Group I and II detected at the top of the column. Concomitant production of N2O with CH4 consumption, observed in the diffusion columns, was confirmed in enrichment cultures. At least three denitrifiers associated with methanotrophic growth and activity were isolated. Methanotrophs that grew under high CH4 and low O2 conditions were associated with a Hyphomicrobium-like bacterium capable of denitrifying with methanol. Methanotrophic activity supported denitrification by (i) reducing the O2 tension, and (ii) supplying organic compounds to the denitrifiers. Because this model system mimics many of the natural environments of methanotrophs, it is likely that the observed segregation of physiological types of methanotrophs and their interaction with denitrifiers also occur in nature.
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Changes in bacterial diversity during the field experiment on biostimulation were monitored by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) analysis of PCR-amplified 16S rDNA fragments. The results revealed that the bacterial community was disturbed after the start of treatment, continued to change for 45 days or 60 days and then formed a relatively stable community different from the original community structure. DGGE analysis of soluble methane monooxygenase (sMMO) hydroxylase gene fragments, mmoX, was performed to monitor the shifts in the numerically dominant sMMO-containing methanotrophs during the field experiment. Sequence analysis on the mmoX gene fragments from the DGGE bands implied that the biostimulation treatment caused a shift of potential dominant sMMO-containing methanotrophs from type I methanotrophs to type II methanotrophs.