Journal of
Soil Science and Environmental Management

  • Abbreviation: J. Soil Sci. Environ. Manage.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-2391
  • DOI: 10.5897/JSSEM
  • Start Year: 2010
  • Published Articles: 287

Full Length Research Paper

Liming and fertiliser P interaction effects on some indices of fertility of selected Malawi acidic soils

M. J. Benjala
  • M. J. Benjala
  • Department of Crop and Soil Sciences, Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources, P. O. Box 219, Lilongwe. Malawi
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J. H. A Maida
  • J. H. A Maida
  • Department of Crop and Soil Sciences, Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources, P. O. Box 219, Lilongwe. Malawi
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M. W. Lowole
  • M. W. Lowole
  • Department of Crop and Soil Sciences, Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources, P. O. Box 219, Lilongwe. Malawi
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V. H. Kabambe
  • V. H. Kabambe
  • Department of Crop and Soil Sciences, Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources, P. O. Box 219, Lilongwe. Malawi
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  •  Received: 16 March 2015
  •  Accepted: 07 July 2015
  •  Published: 01 September 2015

Abstract

Laboratory investigations were conducted to determine effects of liming materials and inorganic phosphatic fertilisers on some indices of soil fertility. Results showed that soil bulk density decreased with increasing additions of liming materials and that interaction effects of dolomitic limestone and mineral fertiliser P increased soil pH from 4.4 for the unlimed top-soils to 6.3 after 3 t ha‒1 of dolomitic limestone and 300 kg ha‒1 Super D (a compound fertiliser) were added. Inverse statistically significant relationships were observed between exchangeable Al and lime (P £ 0.01); exchangeable Al and pH (P £ 0.01); and exchangeable Al and extractable P (P £ 0.01).  About 98% of the total variation in exchangeable Al was accounted for by the applied dolomitic limestone. The present investigations have demonstrated that the observed low fertility of the acidic soils may be attributed to its association with low P availability; reduced nutrients such as K, Mg and Ca; and adverse effects of exchangeable aluminium.
 
Key words: Liming effects, exchangeable aluminium, indices of soil fertility.