Laboratory and greenhouse assessment of plant availability of organic N in animal manure

R.S. Antil, B.H. Janssen, E.A. Lantinga

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Laboratory data (thermal fractionation, pepsin extraction, C:No ratio) of dung and manure were mutually compared and contrasted with plant-availability of organic N (No) as found in a greenhouse experiment according to the double-pot technique. Two types of fresh cow dung (one with a relatively wide and the other with a relatively narrow C:No ratio) and four types of manure (from poultry, sheep, pigs and cow) were compared with ammonium nitrate as chemical reference fertilizer. Relative effectiveness of organic N (REo) was used as characteristic; it was calculated as the fraction of organic N that has the same availability to plants as inorganic N. REo for poultry and sheep manure could not be assessed, probably because of NH3 volatilization causing direct damage to plants and N losses. REo values decreased in the order: dung with narrow C:No > dung with wide C:No > pig manure > cow manure. Thermal fractionation did not provide a suitable index of plant-availability of organic N. Pepsin extracted organic N gave a positive, and C:No ratio a negative relationship with REo. Also between pepsin extracted organic N and C:No ratio a negative relationship was found. As C:No ratio is relatively easy to determine, it is considered the most practical laboratory index for plant availability of organic N in animal manures low in ammonia. When using the double-pot technique, application rates of manure types high in ammonia should be restricted
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)95-106
JournalNutrient Cycling in Agroecosystems
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2009


  • 0.01 m cacl2
  • cattle slurry
  • nitrogen mineralization
  • soil fertility
  • management
  • indexes
  • carbon
  • fresh
  • farm

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Laboratory and greenhouse assessment of plant availability of organic N in animal manure'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this