Agronomy and Soil Science of Biochar

Below, is a catalogue of Bangladeshi research on biochar.  Keep in mind that the properties of biochars differ greatly depending on what they are made from, how they are made, and how they are used. For example, we would expect that biochar made in gasifier stove at 700-1000°C is more porous and stable than biochar made in an oxygen-limited reactor at 350°C.  Biochar made from poultry manure will contain more minerals than biochar made from wood.

Research Papers


Mithu, MMH; Mia, S; Suhi, AA; Tahura, S; Biswas, P; Kader, MA; Kassim, S; Makino, T. 2022. Biochar enriched compost elevates mungbean (Vigna radiata L.) yield under different salt stresses. Crop & Pasture Science DOI10.1071/CP21653 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Context. Organic amendments including biochar can improve crop production under salt stress. However, it is still not clear whether biochar enriched compost would enhance legume performance under salt stress after fresh application and in succeeding crops. Aim. The aim of the study was to examine the effect of biochar enriched compost in reducing the salinity stress after fresh application at increasing rates and in the succeeding crop. Methods. In a pot trial, biochar-compost was applied at four different rates (0, 1, 2, and 3%) while mungbean was grown under five different salt stress conditions (0, 2, 4, 8, and 12 dS m(-1)). In the field trial, the residual effect of different organic amendments (control, compost, cow urine, compost with cow urine, biochar-compost, and biochar-compost with cow urine) was evaluated under three different salt stress conditions (0, 3, and 6 dS m(-1)). Soil properties, plant performance, and nutrient uptake were determined. Key Results. Results revealed a significant biochar x salt treatment interaction in our pot culture. Biochar-compost application can minimise salt effects at a higher application rate resulting in better plant performance; however, these effects are minimal when salt was added at higher rates. We also observed a significant residual effect of biochar compost on biomass production (51.03%), seed yield (79.48%), and K+ uptake (77.95%) than the control treatment. We believe that biochar-compost buffered Na+ while improved plant water, and nutrient availability and uptake. In addition, biochar-compost might have increased nitrogen acquisition through enhanced biological nitrogen fixation. Conclusions. Biochar enriched compost enhances the yield of legume grown under salt stress. Implications. Our results suggest that biocharcompost can be one of the sustainable means for alleviating soil salinity.

Haque, ANA; Uddin, MK; Sulaiman, MF; Amin, AM; Hossain, M; Solaiman, ZM; Mosharrof, M. 2022. Rice Growth Performance, Nutrient Use Efficiency and Changes in Soil Properties Influenced by Biochar under Alternate Wetting and Drying Irrigation. Sustainability 14(13): Article Number7977 DOI10.3390/su14137977 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Water-saving irrigation occasionally causes an inconsequential yield loss in rice; thereby, biochar incorporation in this context has great scope due to its properties, including the release of nutrients and improving soil physicochemical properties. An experiment was conducted to investigate the effect of biochar combined with fertilizer on physiological response, water and nutrient efficiency of rice and changes in biochemical properties of soil under AWD (alternate wetting and drying) irrigation system. Two types of irrigation practice, such as AWD and CF (continuous flooding), and four types of fertilizer combination, namely T1: 25% Rice husk biochar (RHB) + 75% of recommended fertilizer dose (RFD); T2: 25% oil palm empty fruit bunch biochar (EFBB) + 75% of RFD; T3: 100% RFD; and T0: 0% biochar and fertilizer, were assigned to assess their impacts. The AWD irrigation produced a sharply reduced grain yield (210.58 g pot(-1)) compared to CF irrigation (218.04 g pot(-1)), whereas the biochar combination treatments T1 and T2 produced greater yields (260.27 and 252.12 g pot(-1), respectively), which were up to 12.5% higher than RFD. Within AWD, irrigation water usage by T1 and T2 (98.50 and 102.37 g L-1, respectively) was profoundly reduced by up to 28.8%, with improved water use efficiency (WUE). The main effect of biochar treatment T1 and T2 also increased photosynthesis rate during vegetative and maturing stage (up to 17.6 and 24.4%, respectively), in addition to boosting agronomic efficiency of nitrogen (N), phosphorous (P) and potassium (K) compared to RFD (T3). Nevertheless, T1 and T2 significantly enhanced the total carbon and nitrogen; dehydrogenase and urease enzyme activities also increased in both irrigation regimes. The results reveal that the integrated application of RHB and EFBB with fertilizer in the AWD regime significantly reduces irrigation water usage and improves nutrient use efficiency, WUE and soil biochemical properties with a minimum yield penalty for rice.

Puspanathan, TK; Jayawardane, VS; Paul, SC; Ying, KS; Shukla, SK; Anggraini, V. 2022. Effect of biochar on desiccation of marine soils under constant and cyclic temperatures. Acta Geotechnica DOI10.1007/s11440-022-01613-6 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Biochar has recently been gaining increasing attention as a stable and sustainable soil amendment material. However, the effect of biochar amendment on the desiccation behaviour of coastal soils has not yet been examined. Consequently, the present study primarily investigated the effect of exposing biochar-amended marine soil (BAS) to constant and cyclic temperatures on its swell-shrink, evaporation and desiccation cracking characteristics. Biochar contents of 1%, 2%, 4% and particle size ranges of PS-1 (600 mu m < D <= 2000 mu m), PS-2 (300 mu m < D <= 600 mu m), PS-3 (D <= 75 mu m) (D: biochar particle diameter) were employed. It was revealed that the absolute volumetric shrinkage of both unamended and biochar-amended specimens increased as the number of thermal cycles increased. Under continuous heat exposure, 4% (PS-3) BAS in compacted state achieved the maximum reduction in volumetric shrinkage which was 42%. Moreover, under continuous heat exposure, 2% (PS-1) BAS in slurry state achieved the highest reduction in desiccation cracking, which was 73%. The present study highlights the importance of identifying the most effective combination of biochar content and particle size required to achieve a desired outcome, in order to gain the maximum benefit of biochar as an amendment material at the lowest possible cost.


Al Mamun, S; Saha, S; Ferdush, J; Tusher, TR; Abu-Sharif, M; Alam, MF; Balks, MR; Parveen. 2021. Cadmium contamination in agricultural soils of Bangladesh and management by application of organic amendments: evaluation of field assessment and pot experiments. Environmental Geochemistry and Health 43(9):3557-3582 DOI10.1007/s10653-021-00829-x  Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: In recent years, cadmium (Cd) contamination in agricultural soils and its subsequent transfer to crops is one of the high-priority environmental and public health issues of global concern, especially in densely populated developing countries like Bangladesh. However, no effective strategy has been introduced or implemented yet to manage Cd-contaminated soils in order to sustain agricultural production with no human health risks. In this study, agricultural soil samples were collected from 60 locations of 10 upazilas from Tangail district to assess the extent of soil Cd contamination. The Cd concentration ranged from 0.83 to 4.08 mg kg-1 with a mean of 2.17 mg kg-1 in topsoil (0–15 cm), and from 0.67 to 3.74 mg kg-1 with a mean of 2.10 mg kg-1 in subsoil (16–30 cm). The values of contamination factor (CF) indicated that all the sampling locations were found to be highly contaminated with Cd. Pot trials with the application of different doses of biochar and vermicompost in Cd-contaminated soil (0.8 mg kg-1 Cd) revealed that integrated application of biochar (5 t ha-1) and vermicompost (5 t ha-1) was the best treatment that significantly (p < 0.05) reduced plant Cd concentration (72%) and increased the biomass of experimental crop, Red amaranth (Amaranthus cruentus). This combined treatment also significantly reduced the uptake of Cr (37%) when cocontamination was present. The study suggests the application of biochar (5 t ha-1) in combination with vermicompost (5 t ha-1) to reduce human health risk and increase crop production when the soil is loamy sand in texture.

Haque, ANA; Uddin, MK; Sulaiman, MF; Amin, AM; Hossain, M; Solaiman, ZM; Mosharrof, M. 2021. Biochar with alternate wetting and drying irrigation: a potential technique for paddy soil management. [Review] Agriculture-Basel 11(4): Article Number367 DOI10.3390/agriculture11040367 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Over half of the world’s population depends on rice for its calorie supply, although it consumes the highest amount of water compared to other major crops. To minimize this excess water usage, alternate wetting and drying (AWD) irrigation practice is considered as an efficient technique in which soil intermittently dried during the growing period of rice by maintaining yield compared to a flooded system. Continuous AWD may result in poor soil health caused by carbon loss, nutrient depletion, cracking, and affecting soil physical properties. Due to being a potential organic amendment, biochar has a great scope to overcome these problems by improving soil’s physicochemical properties. Biochar is a carbon enriched highly porous material and characterized by several functional groups on its large surface area and full of nutrients. However, biochar’s implication for sustaining soil physicochemical and water retention properties in the AWD irrigation systems has not been widely discussed. This paper reviews the adverse impacts of AWD irrigation on soil structure and C, N depletion; the potential of biochar to mitigate this problem and recovering soil productivity; its influence on improving soil physical properties and moisture retention; and the scope of future study. This review opined that biochar efficiently retains nutrients and supplies as a slow-release fertilizer, which may restrict preferential nutrient loss through soil cracks under AWD. It also improves soil’s physical properties, slows cracking during drying cycles, and enhances water retention by storing moisture within its internal pores. However, long-term field studies are scarce; additionally, economic evaluation is required to confirm the extent of biochar impact.

Mannan, MA; Mia, S; Halder, E; Dijkstra, FA. 2021. Biochar application rate does not improve plant water availability in soybean under drought stress. Agricultural Water Management 253: Article Number106940 DOI10.1016/j.agwat.2021.106940 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Biochar, a form of porous pyrogenic carbon, has been shown to influence soil physicochemical properties and increase crop yield. However, it is unclear whether biochar application at different rates will improve crop performance in a clay soil under drought conditions through increasing plant water uptake. Here, we examined performance of soybean after amendment with biochar (pyrolysed at ~400 °C for 5 h) at four application rates (0, 25, 50 and 100 t ha-1) and grown under three moisture regimes (40%, 60% and 80% of field capacity). The instantaneous plant water content was determined periodically by recording relative water content, water retention capacity, and water uptake capacity in leaves while the cumulative water stress and water use efficiency (WUE) were determined from aboveground δC signatures and amount of water applied, respectively. The yield and yield attributes were also recorded. Results showed that across all drought treatments, biochar application significantly enhanced crop growth rate and increased total biomass production with a doubling in yield in the 100 t ha-1 biochar application. However, the seed yield did not increase with biochar application. Although biochar application improved WUE (biomass produced per unit of water applied), it most likely did not improve plant water uptake, since none of the measured plant water status indicators were affected by biochar. Instead, the enhanced biomass production may have been caused by an improvement in plant nutrition. Possibly, biochar application increased N acquisition through biological nitrogen fixation as there was a significant relationship between nitrogen (N) concentration in aboveground biomass and total biomass production. Moreover, application of biochar increased soil available potassium (K), and enhanced K uptake may have increased stress tolerance in soybean. Therefore, our findings show that biochar could improve plant performance in a clay soil by improving nutrient supply rather than by increasing water uptake.

Mosharrof, M; Uddin, MK; Jusop, S; Sulaiman, MF; Shamsuzzaman, SM; Haque, ANA. 2021. Changes in acidic soil chemical properties and carbon dioxide emission due to biochar and lime treatments. Agriculture-Basel 11(3): Article Number219 DOI10.3390/agriculture11030219 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: To mitigate global climate change and simultaneously increase soil productivity, the use of biochar in agriculture can be a modern agro-technology that can help in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, enhancing soil carbon sequestration, and ultimately increasing crop yield. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of biochar and lime application on the chemical properties of acid soil and the emission of CO2. A 60-day incubation study was conducted with eleven treatments (T) in which two different biochar produced from rice husk (RHB) and oil palm empty fruit bunches (EFBB) at two rates (10 and 15 t ha-1) and on three rates of dolomitic limestone (100%, 75%, and 50%), recommended rate of NPK and a control (no amendment). The result showed that biochar and lime significantly increased soil pH, available P, and decreased exchangeable Al compared to the control. The pH increase was 44.02% compared to the control treatment on day 15, and the available P was found to be 22.44 mg kg-1 on day 30 from Treatment 7 (75% lime + 15 t ha-1 RHB). The cumulative CO2 emission from T7 was 207.40 µmol CO2 m-2 that decreased 139.41% compared to the control. Our findings conclude that RHB with 75% lime has more potential than EFBB to increase nutrient availability and reduce the emission of CO2 in acid soil

Naher, UA; Biswas, JC; Maniruzzaman, M; Khan, FH; Sarkar, MIU; Jahan, A; Hera, MHR; Hossain, MB; Islam, A; Islam, MR; Kabir, MS. 2021. Bio-Organic Fertilizer: A Green Technology to Reduce Synthetic N and P Fertilizer for Rice Production. Frontiers in Plant Science 12: Article Number602052 DOI10.3389/fpls.2021.602052 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Decomposed organic materials, in combination with plant growth-promoting bacteria (PGPB), are environmentally friendly and reduce synthetic fertilizer use in rice production. A bio-organic fertilizer (BoF) was prepared using kitchen waste (79%), chita-dhan (unfilled rice grain) biochar (15%), rock phosphate (5%), and a consortium of 10 PGPB (1%) to supplement 30% nitrogen and to replace triple superphosphate (TSP) fertilizer in rice production with an improvement of soil health. PGPB were local isolates and identified using 16S ribosomal RNA partial gene sequences as Bacillus mycoides, Proteus sp., Bacillus cereus, Bacillus subtilis, Bacillus pumilus, Paenibacillus polymyxa, and Paenibacillus spp. Isolates could fix N2 by 0.7–1.4 g kg-1, solubilize 0.1–1.2 g kg-1 phosphate, and produce 0.1–40 g kg-1 indoleacetic acid. The performance of BoF was evaluated by 16 field experiments and 18 farmers’ field demonstration trials during the year 2017–2020 in different parts of Bangladesh. Performances of BoF were evaluated based on control (T1), full synthetic fertilizer dose of N, P, and K (T2), BoF (2 t ha-1) C 70% N as urea C 100% K as muriate of potash (T3), 70% N as urea C 100% P as TSP C 100% K as muriate of potash (T4), and 2 t ha-1 BoF (T5) treatments. At the research station, average grain yield improved by 10–13% in T3 compared with T2 treatment. Depending on seasons, higher agronomic N use efficiency (19–30%), physiological N use efficiency (8–18%), partial factor productivity (PFP)N (114– 150%), recovery efficiency (RE)N (3–31%), N harvest index (HIN) (14–24%), agronomic P use efficiency (22–25%), partial factor productivity of P (9–12%), AREP (15–23%), and HIP (3–6%) were obtained in T3 compared with T2 treatment. Research results were reflected in farmers’ field, and significant (P < 0.05) higher plant height, tiller, panicle, grain yield, partial factor productivity of N and P were obtained in the same treatment. Application of BoF improved soil organic carbon by 6–13%, along with an increased number of PGPB as compared with full synthetic fertilizer dose. In conclusion, tested BoF can be considered as a green technology to reduce 30% synthetic N and 100% TSP requirements in rice production with improved soil health

Sutradhar, I; Jackson-deGraffenried, M; Akter, S; McMahon, SA; Waid, JL; Schmidt, HP; Wendt, AS; Gabrysch, S. 2021. Introducing urine-enriched biochar-based fertilizer for vegetable production: acceptability and results from rural Bangladesh. Environment Development and Sustainability 23(9):12954-12975 DOI10.1007/s10668-020-01194-y Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Improved agricultural practices that increase yields and preserve soils are critical to addressing food insecurity and undernutrition among smallholder farmer families. Urineenriched biochar has been shown to be an accessible and effective fertilization option in various subtropical countries; however, it is new to Bangladesh. To better understand attitudes and experiences preparing and using urine-enriched biochar fertilizer, mixed-methods research was undertaken among smallholder farmers in northeastern Bangladesh in 2016/2017. In-depth interviews were conducted with 25 respondents who had compared the production of crops grown with biochar-based fertilizer to usual practice. In addition, in areas where trainings on biochar-based fertilization had been offered, 845 farmers were asked about their experience through a quantitative survey. Interview results indicated that cow urine-enriched biochar was favored over human urine because cow urine was perceived as clean and socially acceptable, whereas human urine was considered impure and disgusting. Respondents praised biochar-based fertilizer because it increased yields, cost little, was convenient to prepare with readily available natural materials, produced tastier crops, and allowed families to share their larger yields which in turn enhanced social and financial capital. Comparative field trials indicated a 60% yield benefit in both cabbage and kohlrabi crops. Challenges included uneven access to ingredients, with some respondents having difficulty procuring cow urine and biomass feedstock. The low social, health, and financial risk of adoption and the perceived benefits motivated farmers to produce and apply biochar-based fertilizer in their gardens, demonstrating strong potential for scale-up of this technology in Bangladesh

Tasnim, UF; Shammi, M; Uddin, MK; Akbor, MA. 2021. Effect of biochar amended vermicomposting of food and beverage industry sludge along with cow dung and seed germination bioassay. Pollution 7(2):355-365 DOI10.22059/poll.2021.315530.961 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Transformation of food and beverage industrial sludge into vermicompost into value-added product simultaneously can control gaseous emission. Addition of biochar in the vermicomposting as a bulking agent increases fertilizer value. This research aimed to investigate the effect of biochar amendment on vermicomposting of the food and beverage industry sludge (FBIS) and cow dung (CD) in a different ratio using earthworm Eisenia fetida. We had further investigated the survival rate of E. fetida and the cocoon productions after 35 days of the vermicomposting. Besides, we have also evaluated the seed germination bioassay using Malabar spinach (Basella alba) to determine the toxicity and maturity of produced compost. The survival and cocoon production of E. fetida were higher in vermicompost amended with 10% biochar. Vermicomposting with biochar resulted in a slight pH shift. Reduction in organic carbon (OC) percentage not so significant in biochar added FBIS and CD. An increase in phosphorus and potassium content and a decrease in nitrogen percentage observed; vermicomposting with biochar resulted in higher seed germination, root elongation, and germination index than vermicomposting without biochar.

Ul Islam, M; Jiang, FH; Guo, ZC; Peng, XH. 2021. Does biochar application improve soil aggregation? A meta-analysis. Soil & Tillage Research 209: Article Number104926 DOI10.1016/j.still.2020.104926 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Biochar as a potential soil amendment has been widely used in agricultural soils for improving soil physical properties. However, the effects of biochar addition on soil aggregation are inconsistent in many individual studies. Therefore, we conducted a meta-analysis of 641 comparisons from 119 published studies to assess the combined effects of biochar application on soil aggregation through biochar attributes, initial soil properties, and experimental conditions. Overall, our results indicate that biochar application significantly improved soil aggregation by 16.4 ± 2.5 %, regardless of biochar/experimental/soil conditions. The response ratio (lnR) of biochar-induced soil aggregation had significant variability across different studies. In the context of biochar attributes, there was a higher favorable influence of wood biochar with higher pyrolysis temperature (> 600 °C). With the amount of biochar increased, the effects of biochar on soil aggregation significantly improved (P < 0.001). Considering experimental conditions, the advancement of soil aggregation was more significant over a longer period of time (> 3 years). In particular, the wet sieving method (18.2 %) is better than the dry sieving method (4.05 %) for assessing soil aggregation. Moreover, soil aggregation intensified in neutral and acidic soil, while alkaline soil was not significantly changed. Also, biochar amendment strengthened soil aggregation in the loam-textured (19.9 %) soils relative to sandy soils (13.4 %). Our meta-analysis demonstrates that biochar as a soil amendment can improve soil aggregation through the combination of experimental conditions with specific biochar, and soil properties.


Alam, MZ; Hoque, MAV; Carpenter-Boggs, L. 2020. Identification of practical amendments to mitigate soil arsenic levels in peas. Rhizosphere 16: Article Number100268 DOI10.1016/j.rhisph.2020.100268 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: The accumulation of As in biomass of crops can negatively affect human health via the food chain. This research is focused on the biomass growth and mitigation of As accumulation in roots, shoots, and grains of pea in high As soil amended singly, with each of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF), biochar (BC), selenium (Se), silica gel (Sigel), and sulfur (S). Root, shoot, and grain masses were found higher in pea grown in As soil amended with each of AMF, Se, Si-gel, and S. Amendments with BC was found less effective. Arsenic in grains was reduced by 66–76% in treatments with AMF, Se, Si-gel, and S. It is recommended that soil amendments with AMF, Se, S, and Si-gel to be used in field trials for effectiveness in multiple crops

Alam, MZ; Carpenter-Boggs, L; Hoque, MA; Ahammed, GJ. 2020. Effect of soil amendments on antioxidant activity and photosynthetic pigments in pea crops grown in arsenic contaminated soil. Heliyon 6(11): Article Numbere05475 DOI10.1016/j.heliyon.2020.e05475 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: The mechanism of arsenic (As) immobilization in soils is crucial for improving photosynthetic pigments and antioxidants in food crops. The effects of soil amendments with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF), biochar (BC), selenium (Se), sulfur (S) and Si-gel on the concentrations of chlorophyll, carotenoid, proline, malondialdehyde (MDA), and the activity of ascorbate peroxidase (APX), guaiacol peroxidase (POD), and catalase (CAT) were studied in BARI pea (Pisum sativum) under As stress. Soil amendments with AMF, Se, Si-gel and S enhanced chlorophyll a and total chlorophyll contents by 31–35% and 60–75%, respectively. Likewise, CAT activity was increased by 24–46% in BC, AMF, Se, Si-gel and S-treated pea, respectively. APX and POD activity was also found to be enriched with the treatment of BC, AMF and Se. In contrast, the content of MDA and proline was found lower than that of control in peas. These findings indicate that oxidative damage, osmotic stress and cell injury were possibly reduced in As-stressed peas. Particularly, AMF and Se both were comparatively more potential in comparison to BC. Thus, soil amendments with AMF, BC and Se are significantly important for improving antioxidant enzyme activity of food crops grown in soil with elevated As levels.

Hossain, MZ; Bahar, MM; Sarkar, B; Donne, SW; Ok, YS; Palansooriya, KN; Kirkham, MB; Chowdhury, S; Bolan, N. 2020. Biochar and its importance on nutrient dynamics in soil and plant. A Review. Biochar 2(4):379-420 DOI10.1007/s42773-020-00065-z Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Biochar, an environmentally friendly soil conditioner, is produced using several thermochemical processes. It has unique characteristics like high surface area, porosity, and surface charges. This paper reviews the fertilizer value of biochar, and its effects on soil properties, and nutrient use efficiency of crops. Biochar serves as an important source of plant nutrients, especially nitrogen in biochar produced from manures and wastes at low temperature (= 400 °C). The phosphorus, potassium, and other nutrient contents are higher in manure/waste biochars than those in crop residues and woody biochars. The nutrient contents and pH of biochar are positively correlated with pyrolysis temperature, except for nitrogen content. Biochar improves the nutrient retention capacity of soil, which depends on porosity and surface charge of biochar. Biochar increases nitrogen retention in soil by reducing leaching and gaseous loss, and also increases phosphorus availability by decreasing the leaching process in soil. However, for potassium and other nutrients, biochar shows inconsistent (positive and negative) impacts on soil. After addition of biochar, porosity, aggregate stability, and amount of water held in soil increase and bulk density decreases. Mostly, biochar increases soil pH and, thus, influences nutrient availability for plants. Biochar also alters soil biological properties by increasing microbial populations, enzyme activity, soil respiration, and microbial biomass. Finally, nutrient use efficiency and nutrient uptake improve with the application of biochar to soil. Thus, biochar can be a potential nutrient reservoir for plants and a good amendment to improve soil properties.

Islam, MdM, Shah, J., Shoriful, I., Muktar, H., Isik, M. and Toufiq, I., 2020. Akha biochar enhances soil fertility and productivity of red amaranth plant. Net Journal of Agricultural Science, 8(1), pp.1-7. Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Biochar is a carbon-rich co-product resulting from pyrolyzing biomass. Its application to soil may increase fertility and productivity of soils. The utilization of biochar as a source of nutrients for red amaranth production was investigated in this study at Naogaon district of Bangladesh. Red amaranth (Amaranthus tricolor L) is a short duration vegetable crop that is cultivated throughout the year in Bangladesh. This study aims to obtain a proper dose of biochar for the growth and yield of red amaranth plants. Six treatments like control (nothing was added), 5 kg/decimal biochar only, BARC (Bangladesh Agricultural Research Council) recommended fertilizer for red amaranth production, BARC recommended fertilizer plus 2.5 kg/decimal biochar, BARC recommended fertilizer plus 5 kg/decimal biochar and BARC recommended fertilizer plus 10 kg/decimal biochar were considered for red amaranth cultivation. Result showed that the BARC recommended dose with 5 kg biochar/decimal produced highest red amaranth yield among the other treatments. It was also observed that the biochar used red amaranth were better appearance than fertilizer used red amaranth. This study concluded that biochar has the potential to improve soil fertility and productivity of red amaranth plant in Bangladesh.

Joardar, JC; Mondal, B; Sikder, S. 2020. Comparative study of poultry litter and poultry litter biochar application in the soil for plant growth. SN Applied Sciences 2(11): Article Number1770 DOI10.1007/s42452-020-03596-z Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: The direct application of poultry litter (PL) in the soil leads to some environmental problems. Poultry litter biochar (PLB) produced through the pyrolysis process under limited oxygen supply at 400 °C for 10 min, and nutrients were analyzed for both PL and PLB. Both PL and PLB were applied in the soil at 1, 2, and 3% (w/w) along with control. Ipomoea aquatica was grown in earthen pots for 60 days to evaluate the response of both PL and PLB. After pyrolysis of PL, the nutrients content (total N, K, S, Ca, Mg, and Zn), pH, electric conductivity, and organic carbon in PLB were found to be increased than those of PL except for P. Plant height significantly increased by 14.3, 23.3, 20.1%; and 17.8, 34.4, 32.4% after the application of 1, 2, and 3% PL and PLB, respectively, as compared to the control. Plant fresh weight significantly increased by 70.4, 124.6, and 124.7% and 53.3, 134.3, and 200.4% compared to the control after the application of PL and PLB at 1, 2, and 3%, respectively. Increased plant height and fresh weight can be ascribed mostly to the capacity of PL and PLB as a source of nutrients for plant uptake. The significantly higher yield was observed at 3% PLB application. Compared to the PL, plant height and fresh weight increased by 18.2 and 33.68%, respectively, at 3% PLB application. PLB rather than PL might be a promising organic amendment for maintaining sustainable agriculture.

Karim, MR; Halim, MA; Gale, NV; Thomas, SC. 2020. Biochar effects on soil physiochemical properties in degraded managed ecosystems in northeastern Bangladesh. Soil Systems 4(4): Article Number 69 DOI10.3390/soilsystems404006  Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: A body of emerging research shows the promise of charcoal soil amendments (“biochars”) in restoring fertility in degraded agricultural and forest soils. “Sustainable biochars” derived from locally produced waste biomass and produced near the application site are of particular interest. We tested the effects of surface applications of wood-derived biochars (applied at 7.5 t·ha-1) on soil physiochemical properties (N, P, K, pH, soil moisture content, organic matter content, and bulk density) in three land-use types: agriculture (Camellia sinensis monoculture), agroforestry (C. sinensis with shade trees), and secondary forest (Dipterocarpus dominated) assessed over seven months. We found significant positive effects of biochar on soil physiochemical properties in all land-use types, with the strongest responses in the most degraded tea monoculture sites. Although biochar had no significant effect on soil N and K, it improved soil P—the primary nutrient most commonly limiting in tropical soils. Biochar also enhanced soil moisture and organic matter content, reduced bulk density, and increased soil pH in monoculture sites. Our results support the general hypothesis that biochar can improve the fertility of degraded soils in agricultural and forest systems in Bangladesh and suggest that biochar additions may be of great benefit to the most degraded soils.

Masud, M.M., Abdulaha-Al Baquy, M., Akhter, S., Sen, R., Barman, A. and Khatun, M.R., 2020. Liming effects of poultry litter derived biochar on soil acidity amelioration and maize growth. Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety, 202: Article Number 110865. DOI10.1016/j.ecoenv.2020.110865 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Crop production in acid soils is facing enormous challenges due to low soil quality associated with an increase in the acidification rate and aluminum toxicity. Despite comprehensive prior work with biochar application on nutrient availability and crop productivity in acid soils, little information is available about the recommendation or standardization of biochar application rates that are more suitable for soil fertility improvement under different soil environments (physico-chemical properties) for maximizing the benefits of biochar applications and minimizing the potential environmental risk. Thus, the objective of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of poultry litter (PL) and poultry litter biochar (PLB) in ameliorating the fertility of acid soils through incubation and pot experiments. The soil was amended with different materials as follows; lime (1 g kg-1), PL (5, 10 and 15 g kg-1) and PLB (5, 10 and 15 g kg-1) along with control (non-amended). A pot experiment was also conducted using similar treatments to observe the responses of maize crop to the different amendments. The results indicated an increase in the pH and a decrease in exchangeable acidity in lime, PL and PLB amended soils. Lower soil pH, base cations and soil available phosphorus (P), and higher exchangeable acidity were found in control than the amended soils. Compared to PL and lime, PLB achieved greater increase rate in soil pH and reduction rate in soil exchangeable acidity with increased soil exchangeable base cations. An increase in soil available calcium (Ca) was observed in the lime treatment, while in PL and PLB treatments, there was an increase in soil available Ca, magnesium (Mg), potassium (K) and P. Application of the amendments increased availability of nitrogen (N), P, K, Ca and Mg relative to the control for maize in the pot experiment. When PL and PLB amendments were compared, it was found that the PLB was the best choice for the amelioration of acid soils as well as nutrient uptake by maize plants. It is suggested that application of PLB at the rate of 15 g kg-1 is suitable for maize growth in acid soils.

Panhwar, QA; Naher, UA; Shamshuddin, J; Ismail, MR. 2020. Effects of biochar and ground magnesium limestone application, with or without bio-fertilizer addition, on biochemical properties of an acid sulfate soil and rice yield. Agronomy-Basel 10(8): Article Number1100 DOI10.3390/agronomy10081100 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: A study was conducted to evaluate the effects of applying rice husk biochar (RHB) or ground magnesium limestone (GML) in combination with bio-fertilizer on soil biochemical properties and the yield of rice planted on an acid sulfate soil. The RHB or GML plus bio-fertilizer were applied each at the rate of 4 t ha-1. Applying the amendments increased soil pH (>5.0) and improved soil biochemical properties with a concomitant reduction of Al and Fe that resulted in enhanced rice growth. Applying GML plus bio-fertilizer resulted in increased soil N content (0.20%), available P (34.38 mg kg-1), exchangeable Ca (2.97 cmolc kg-1) and exchangeable Mg (2.45 cmolc kg-1); all these enhanced rice nutrient uptake. The highest bacterial population of 8.34 log10 CFU g-1 soil was found in the same treatment. Applying GML and RHB alone, or in combination with bio-fertilizer, was found to enhance rice growth and the yield. The highest plant height (90.33 cm), leaf chlorophyll content (38.05), plant tiller numbers (16), filled grains (86%), number of panicles per plant (18), lengths of panicles (24.40 cm), grain (5.24 t ha-1), straw yield (10.20 t ha-1) and harvest index (0.51) were determined in the GML plus bio-fertilizer, followed by RHB plus bio-fertilizer treatment. Thus, GML applied in combination with bio-fertilizer is considered as a promising agronomic package to sustain the production of rice planted on acid sulfate soils.

Rahman, GKM; Rahman, MM; Alam, MS; Kamal, KZ; Mashuk, HA; Datta, R; Meena, RS. 2020. Biochar and organic amendments for sustainable soil carbon and soil health. In: Datta, R; Meena, RS; Pathan, SI; Ceccherini, MT (editors) Carbon and Nitrogen in Soil. Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. pp. 45-85 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Organic matter is the life of soil and vital to environmental quality and sustainability. Intensive cultivation solely depending on inorganic fertilizers with lesser quantity or no organic fertilizers resulted in lower carbon content in soils of tropical and subtropical countries. This paper attempted to identify the best soil and crop management practices which ensure slower microbial decomposition of organic materials, cause a net buildup of carbon in soils, and potentially mitigate the negative effect of global warming and climate change. Biochar and other organic materials have been applied to soil as most valuable amendments for increasing carbon sequestration, soil health improvement, and reduction of greenhouse gas emission from soil. Being recalcitrant in nature, biochar is highly efficient in storing carbon in soils. Biochar possesses a larger surface area and therefore is capable of holding and exchanging cations in soils. Quantity and quality of biochar produced from different organic materials are highly variable because of various production temperature and meager oxygen control system. This review contributes to understanding details of production technologies and performance mechanisms of biochar and other organic amendments in soil. Biochar and organic materials improve soil bio-physicochemical properties, serve as a sink of atmospheric CO2, and ensure ecological integrity and environmental sustainability

Sani, MNH; Hasan, M; Uddain, J; Subramaniam, S. 2020. Impact of application of Trichoderma and biochar on growth, productivity and nutritional quality of tomato under reduced N-P-K fertilization. Annals of Agricultural Science 65(1):107-115 DOI10.1016/j.aoas.2020.06.003 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Extensive use of synthetic fertilizer to maximize the productivity often leads to depletion of essential soil nutrients, environmental degradation and adversely affects soil rhizosphere microbiota. The present study investigates the efficacy of Trichoderma and biochar co-application on tomato productivity, nutritional quality and soil health improvements under reduced N-P-K fertilizer application. The study comprised of five treatments: (i) standard application of N-P-K, (ii) 50% dose of N-P-K (control), (iii) Trichoderma + 50% dose of N-P-K, (iv) biochar+50% dose of N-P-K and (v) biochar+Trichoderma + 50% dose of N-P-K. The growth, yield, and antioxidant properties of tomatoes, as well as their mineral composition, were analysed. The results showed that the combined application of Trichoderma and biochar increased the growth attributes positively and produced 101.45% and 11.33% higher yield compared to half dose and standard dose of N-P-K, respectively. The combined application also elicited an increase in mineral contents, total soluble solids as well as bioactive molecules such as lycopene and ascorbic acid, thereby increased the nutritional and functional quality of the tomato fruits. Collectively, Trichoderma and biochar improved soil fertility, nutrient uptake and promoted the growth of rhizosphere fungal and bacterial populations, which combined resulted in higher tomato yields, antioxidants, and minerals. Therefore, the co-application of Trichoderma and biochar with a 50% dose of N-P-K can be considered an effective technique for the sustainable production of tomato with higher yield and superior quality


Alam, MA; Rahman, MM; Biswas, JC; Akhter, S; Maniruzzaman, M; Choudhury, AK; Jahan, MAS; Miah, MMU; Sen, R; Kamal, MZU; Mannan, MA; Shiragi, HK; Kabir, W; Kalra, N. 2019. Nitrogen transformation and carbon sequestration in wetland paddy field of Bangladesh. Paddy and Water Environment 17(4):677-688 DOI10.1007/s10333-019-00693-7 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Rice-based cropping systems in Bangladesh have received little consideration of changing nitrogen (N) and carbon (C) in soil. Therefore, this study was conducted at the Research Field of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Agricultural University, Bangladesh, in monsoon to determine release patterns of ammonium–N (NH4+–N) and nitrate–N (NO3-–N), C contents of different sized soil fractions and to quantify the rates of C sequestration as influenced by organic amendments and N fertilizer in wetland paddy fields. Rice straw, vermicompost, rice husk biochar, cow dung and poultry manure were applied using 2 t C ha-1 with 0, 100 and 150 N kg ha-1 in a factorial randomized complete block design. Application of different organic materials attributed maximum amount of NH4+–N and NO3-–N in soils at 45–60 days after transplanting, while N fertilizer application considering 150 kg N ha-1 provided the maximum amounts of available N. Rice grain yield was found statistically similar between 100 and 150 kg N ha-1. Carbon contents in soils of different sized fractions inconsistently varied with organic and inorganic fertilization and time elapsed. The highest amount of organic C was sequestered in cow dung-treated plots followed by rice straw, rice husk biochar, poultry manure and vermicompost. Nitrogen fertilizer enhanced decomposition of organic materials, and therefore, C sequestration was significantly lower with higher N rates. The study recommends continuous application of organic fertilizers and optimization of N in the tropical and subtropical regions which ultimately either contribute to maintain or increase C sequestration in crop fields.

Alam, MZ; McGee, R; Hoque, MA; Ahammed, GJ; Carpenter-Boggs, L. 2019. Effect of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, selenium and biochar on photosynthetic pigments and antioxidant enzyme activity under arsenic stress in mung bean (Vigna radiata). Frontiers in Physiology 10: Article Number193 DOI10.3389/fphys.2019.00193 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Environmental perturbations alter biochemical compounds in food crops. Arsenic (As), a toxic metalloid, is known to affect the cultivation of food crops in many regions of the world; however, the changes in chlorophyll, catalase (CAT), and proline in response to As stress and the role of stress relief substances remain largely unknown in mung bean (Vigna radiate L.). In this study, biochar (BC), arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF), and selenium (Se) were applied to soils as stress relief substances (under 30 mg kg-1 As stress), and the effects of BC, AMF, and Se on chlorophyll a, chlorophyll b, total chlorophyll, CAT activity, and proline content were studied in different mung bean genotypes. Under As stress, the chlorophyll a, chlorophyll b, and total chlorophyll contents in BARI mung 3, BARI mung 5, and BARI mung 8 were found statistically similar. Meanwhile, CAT activity increased in comparison to the control due to the application of BC, AMF, and Se in mung bean crops. However, proline was found significantly lower in AMF, BC, and Se-treated mung bean. This indicates that oxidative stress was potentially minimized in As-stressed mung bean crops due to the application of these stress relief substances. Notably, AMF was relatively effective against As stress in comparison to BC and Se. It is concluded that BC, AMF, and Se are all highly effective in enhancing antioxidant defenses as well as the nutritional quality of mung bean crops under As stress.

Iqbal, MT; Ortas, I; Ahmed, IAM; Isik, M; Islam, MS. 2019. Rice straw biochar amended soil improves wheat productivity and accumulated phosphorus in Grain. Journal of Plant Nutrition 42(14):1605-1623 DOI10.1080/01904167.2019.1628986 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Biochar is a pyrolyzed biomass produced under limited oxygen or oxygen absent conditions. Few investigations have been conducted to determine the combined effect of biochar with chemical fertilizer on growth, yield and nutrient distribution pattern in root, shoot and grain in wheat as well as changes in soil physiochemical properties. This research was designed to study the combined effect of chemical fertilizer and rice straw-derived biochar on soil physio-chemical properties, growth, yield and nutrient distribution pattern within wheat plant tissue and grain. Results showed that rice straw biochar caused a significant decrease in soil pH and increase in soil organic matter as well as nutrients like total nitrogen (TN), potassium (K), magnesium (Mg) and boron (B) due to incubation. Result also showed that root biomass and straw did not differ between Bangladesh Agricultural Research Council (BARC) and ½ BARC + rice straw biochar treatment. Similarly, thousand grain weight and grain yield did not differ between the same treatments. The phosphorus concentration in wheat grain was highest in ½ BARC + rice straw biochar as compared to other treatments. The use of rice straw biochar in addition to the chemical fertilizers in wheat production systems is an economically feasible and practical nutrient management practice. Our findings urged that reduction of chemical fertilizer application is possible with supplementation of rice straw biochar.

Islam, M; Halder, M ; Siddique, MAB; Razir, SAA; Sikder, S; Joardar, JC. 2019. Banana peel biochar as alternative source of potassium for plant productivity and sustainable agriculture. International Journal of Recycling of Organic Waste in Agriculture 8:S407-S413 DOI10.1007/s40093-019-00313-8 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Purpose Biochar addition to soil is immensely beneficial for increasing plant productivity and C sequestration, attenuating nutrient leaching loss, counteracting heavy metal contamination and organic waste triggered environmental pollution. To understand the sustainable benefits of biochar, two pot experiments were conducted under net house condition in Khulna University, Bangladesh. Methods Biochar was prepared from banana peel waste through slow pyrolysis process under limited oxygen condition. Three lower rates (1, 2 and 3%) of banana peel biochar (BPB) were added with agricultural soil along with control with three replications for each. After incorporation of BPB into soil, pots were kept under field condition for 7 days and then the seeds of Ipomoea aquatica were sown. Plants were harvested after 42 days from seeds sowing and plant height, leaf number, fresh weight, and dry weight were measured. Another pot experiment was also conducted under sand medium to test the BPB as K-rich soil amendment where K was applied from two different sources (KCl and BPB) along with control. Seeds of Cucurbita moschata were sown and 40 days after seed sowing, K deficiency was observed in control treatments. Results Banana peel biochar was found to be rich in K content. Plant productivity and above-ground biomass were reduced in 1% BPB treatments, but increased in 2 and 3% BPB treatments as compared to control but statistically insignificant (p <0.05). In case of second experiment, K deficiency symptoms were observed in 40 days aged Cucurbita moschata seedlings under control treatments, whereas no K deficiency symptom was noticed in plants grown under K supplied from both KCl and BPB. Moreover, the plant grown with BPB was found healthy, stronger and greener in appearance. Conclusion This positive influence of BPB on plant growth suggests the alternative way to overcome the use of chemical fertilizer and effective way of utilization of agricultural wastes through recycling

Sikder, S; Joardar, JC. 2019. Biochar production from poultry litter as management approach and effects on plant growth. International Journal of Recycling of Organic Waste in Agriculture 8(1):47-58 DOI10.1007/s40093-018-0227-5 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Purpose A lots of poultry litter (PL) is being generated every day from poultry industries and improper management leads to different environmental problems. Production of biochar from PL is a new management strategy of PL which is a nutrient-rich organic amendment for improving soil nutritional status. The experiment was aimed for the production of poultry litter biochar (PLB) from fresh PL to assess the important properties of both PL and PLB, and to observe the effects on plant growth. It also appraised the change of soil properties after PL and PLB application. Methods Poultry litter biochar was produced from fresh PL heated at 300 °C temperature for 10 min in muffle furnace. Poultry litter was applied into the soil at 2.5, 5.0, 7.5 and 10 t ha-1 and PLB was applied at 1, 2, 3 and 4 t ha-1 along with control. Gima kalmi (Ipomoea aquatica) was grown as test plant. To assess the potentiality and residual effect, the same plant was grown consecutively after harvesting first crop. Post-harvest soil analysis was also carried out after harvesting the first crop. Results After pyrolysis pH, EC, organic carbon, available nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, total phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and iron were increased in PLB. A significant (p < 0.001) increase in plant growth and biomass production was observed and it was higher in PLB-treated soil than that of the PL-treated soil for both first and second crop. Conclusion Poultry litter biochar might be a promising organic fertilizer with high nutrient composition than fresh PL. This also could be an ecofriendly management strategy for sustainable agriculture and long-term productivity.


Khan, TF; Didar-Ul-Alam, M. 2018. Effects of biochar on legume-Rhizobium symbiosis in soil. Bangladesh Journal of Botany 47(4):945-952. Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: An in vitro study was conducted to observe the effects of tannery waste and biochar on soil bacterial population particularly legume-Rhizobium symbiosis. The study comprised a total of seven different treatments including a control. Count of total bacteria and Rhizobium was observed on initial materials and on all treated soils. A leguminous plant, cowpea, was used to study the effects on nitrogen fixation which could be further linked to legume-Rhizobium symbiosis. Bacterial population was higher in tannery waste treated soils than the corresponding biochar treated ones. It was found that waste treated soils had higher Rhizobium count than the biochar treated ones. Nitrogen fixation was found to be higher in tannery waste than biochar treatments. Although there appeared to be no adverse impact on legume-Rhizobium symbiosis, growth of bacteria particularly Rhizobium was inhibited indicating that microbial functioning of the soil might be affected and thereby likely to jeopardize agricultural production and food security.

Mia, S; Uddin, ME; Kader, MA; Ahsan, A; Mannan, MA; Hossain, MM; Solaiman, ZM. 2018. Pyrolysis and co-composting of municipal organic waste in Bangladesh: A quantitative estimate of recyclable nutrients, greenhouse gas emissions, and economic benefits. Waste Management 75: 503-513 DOI: 10.1016/j.wasman.2018.01.038 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Waste causes environmental pollution and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions when it is not managed sustainably. In Bangladesh, municipal organic waste (MOW) is partially collected and landfilled. Thus, it causes deterioration of the environment urging a recycle-oriented waste management system. In this study, we propose a waste management system through pyrolysis of selective MOW for biochar production and composting of the remainder with biochar as an additive. We estimated the carbon (C), nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) recycling potentials in the new techniques of waste management. Waste generation of a city was calculated using population density and per capita waste generation rate (PWGR). Two indicators of economic development, i.e., gross domestic product (GDP) and per capita gross national income (GNI) were used to adopt PWGR with a projected contribution of 5-20% to waste generation. The projected PWGR was then validated with a survey. The waste generation from urban areas of Bangladesh in 2016 was estimated between 15,507 and 15,888 t day(-1) with a large share (similar to 75%) of organic waste. Adoption of the proposed system could produce 3936 t day(-1) biochar blended compost with an annual return of US $210 million in 2016 while it could reduce GHG emission substantially (-503 CO2 e t(-1) municipal waste). Moreover, the proposed system would able to recover similar to 46%, 54%, 54% and 61% of total C, N, P and K content in the initial waste, respectively. We also provide a projection of waste generation and nutrient recycling potentials for the year 2035. The proposed method could be a self-sustaining policy option for waste management as it would generate similar to US$51 from each tonne of waste. Moreover, a significant amount of nutrients can be recycled to agriculture while contributing to the reduction in environmental pollution and GHG emission.

Piash, MI; Hossain, MdF; Anyanwu, IN; Al Mamun, S; Parveen, Z. 2018. Effect of biochar application on soil carbon fluxes from sequential dry and wet cultivation systems. American Journal of Climate Change 7: 40-53. Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Application of biochar has been highly credited for its potential to sequester carbon and GHG mitigation from tropical agro-ecosystems. However, experiments show inconsistent results depending on soil and biochar type, cultivation system, climatic condition and the type of evolved GHGs. This study emphasized on the effect of biochar on carbon emission trends from a sequential dry and wet cultivation system of Bangladesh. An incubation study was conducted with two contrasting soils and eight different treatments viz. control, only fertilizer, three different biochars (10 t·ha−1) with and without recommended fertilizer dose. Results revealed the fact that, emission of carbon was substantially higher from Sara soil than Kalma soil. Biochar treatments did not have any easing effect on CO2 emission at field condition; rather, increased in most of the cases. However, emission was significantly (P < 0.05) suppressed at submerged condition by biochar application. Non-fertilized water hyacinth biochar was most effective in this regard. In general, fertilizer application caused higher emission of CO2. Biochar application was ineffective to control CH4 and CO release to atmosphere and submergence further intensified their emission significantly. The overall results indicate that applied biochars have negligible effect on carbon emission except for reducing CO2 from submerged soils.

Shashi, M; Mannan, M; Islam, M; Rahman, M. 2018. Impact of rice husk biochar on growth, water relations and yield of maize (Zea mays L.) under drought condition. The Agriculturists, 16(2): 93-101. Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: The present experiment was conducted to study the impact of rice husk biochar on growth, water relations and yield of maize (BARI Hybrid Bhutta- 9) under drought (60 and 40% of FC) conditions. Four doses of rice husk biochar @ 0, 5, 10 and 20 t/ha were applied as an amendment in soil before sowing of seeds. Results revealed that drought stress reduced plant height, relative water content and grain yield of maize. But rice husk biochar at different doses improved the above mentioned characters under drought conditions. Under 60% of FC, the highest plan height, leaf water content and yield were 196.67 cm, 79.86% and 89.75 g/plant, respectively when biochar was applied @ 20 t/ha but it was 173.33 cm, 78.32% and 84.57 g/plant, respectively under 40% of FC when biochar was applied at the same dose. It may be concluded that, rice husk biochar @ 20 t/ha showed the best result to promote growth, water relation traits and yield of maize under drought condition.


Ahmed, F; Islam, MS; Iqbal, MT. 2017. Biochar amendment improves soil fertility and productivity of mulberry plant. Eurasian Journal of Soil Science. 6(3):226-237. DOI:10.18393/ejss.291945 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT:Biochar has the potential to improve soil fertility and crop productivity. A field experiment was carried out at the experimental field of Bangladesh Sericulture Research and Training Institute (BSRTI), Rajshahi, Bangladesh. The objective of this study was to examine the effect of biochar on soil properties, growth, yield and foliar disease incidence of mulberry plant. The study consisted of 6 treatments: control, basal dose of NPK, rice husk biochar, mineral enriched biochar, basal dose + rice husk biochar and basal dose + mineral enriched biochar. Growth parameters such as node/meter, total branch number/plant, total leaf yield/hectare/year were significantly increased in basal dose + mineral enriched biochar treated plot in second year compared with the other fertilizer treatments. In second year, the total leaf yield/hectare/year were also 142.1% and 115.9% higher in combined application of basal dose + mineral enriched biochar and basal dose + rice husk biochar, respectively, than the control treatment. The soil properties such as organic matter, phosphorus, sulphur and zinc percentage were significantly increased with both the (mineral enriched and rice husk) biochar treated soil applied with or without recommended basal dose of NPK than the control and only the recommended basal dose of NPK, respectively. Further, the lowest incidences of tukra (6.4%), powdery mildew (10.4%) and leaf spot (7.6%) disease were observed in second year under mineral enriched biochar treated plot than the others. The findings revealed that utilization of biochar has positive effect on the improvement of soil fertility and productivity as well as disease suppression of mulberry plant.

Hossain, MB; Rahman, MM; Biswas, JC; Miah, MMU; Akhter, S; Maniruzzaman, M; Choudhury, AK; Ahmed, F; Shiragi, MHK; Kalra, N. 2017. Carbon mineralization and carbon dioxide emission from organic matter added soil under different temperature regimes. International Journal of Recycling of Organic Waste in Agriculture 6(4):311-319 DOI10.1007/s40093-017-0179-1 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Purpose Information on carbon dioxide (CO2) emission from different organic sources and their temperature sensitivity to decomposition is scarce in Bangladesh. Therefore, this study quantified the rates of CO2 emission and carbon (C) degradation constants from different organic material mixed soils at variable temperatures in two laboratory experiments. Methods The first experiment was conducted at room temperature for 26 weeks to study CO2 emission and C mineralization using vermicompost, chicken manure, cow dung, rice straw, and rice husk biochar. Weekly CO2 emission was measured by alkali absorption followed by acid titration. The second experiment comprised two factors, viz. four organic materials (vermicompost, chicken manure, cow dung, and rice straw) and six temperature regimes (25, 30, 35, 40, 45, and 50 °C). Organic materials at 2.5 g C kg-1 soil were mixed in both experiments. Results CO2 emission reached the peak at 5th weeks of incubation and then decreased with irregular fashion until 21st week. The C emission loss followed in the order of chicken manure > rice straw > vermicompost > cow dung > rice husk biochar, and C degradation constants indicated the slower decomposition of rice husk biochar compared to cow dung, vermicompost, chicken manure, and rice straw. Temperature positively enhanced the mineralization of organic materials in the order of 50 > 45 > 40 > 35 > 30> 25 °C, which contributed to higher availability of soil phosphorus. Conclusions High temperature increased mineralization of tested organic materials. Because of slower decomposition rice husk biochar, cow dung and vermicompost application can be considered as climate-smart soil management practices that might help in reducing CO2 emission from soil.

Iqbal MT. 2017. Utilization of biochar in improving yield of wheat in Bangladesh. Bulgarian Journal of Soil Science 2(1):53-74. Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Biochar is a carbon-rich co-product resulting from pyrolysis process. Biochar amendment to soil can improve productivity of wheat plant. Therefore, the utilization of biochar in improving yield of wheat in Bangladesh was investigated in this study. Soil pH decreased 0.8 units and organic matter increased 0.67% after 159 days of incubation for the biochar amendment. Several yield parameters was similar between Bangladesh Agricultural Research Council (BARC) recommended fertilizer and half of BARC recommended fertilizer plus rice straw added treatment. This study also found that the combination of rice straw biochar with half of BARC recommended fertilizer gave better effect than single application rice straw biochar as well as gave the highest yield of wheat in the same treatment. Rice straw biochar can have the potential to decrease dependence on chemical fertilizer for wheat production. Therefore, utilization of biochar is a viable option to improve yield of wheat in Bangladesh.


Ahiduzzaman, M; Islam, AKMS. 2016. Preparation of porous bio-char and activated carbon from rice husk by leaching ash and chemical activation. SpringerPlus (2016) 5:1248 DOI: 10.1186/s40064-016-2932-8. Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Preparation porous bio-char and activated carbon from rice husk char study has been conducted in this study. Rice husk char contains high amount silica that retards the porousness of bio-char. Porousness of rice husk char could be enhanced by removing the silica from char and applying heat at high temperature. Furthermore, the char is activated by using chemical activation under high temperature. In this study no inert media is used. The study is conducted at low oxygen environment by applying biomass for consuming oxygen inside reactor and double crucible method (one crucible inside another) is applied to prevent intrusion of oxygen into the char. The study results shows that porous carbon is prepared successfully without using any inert media. The adsorption capacity of material increased due to removal of silica and due to the activation with zinc chloride compared to using raw rice husk char. The surface area of porous carbon and activated carbon are found to be 28, 331 and 645 m(2) g(-1) for raw rice husk char, silica removed rice husk char and zinc chloride activated rice husk char, respectively. It is concluded from this study that porous bio-char and activated carbon could be prepared in normal environmental conditions instead of inert media. This study shows a method and possibility of activated carbon from agro-waste, and it could be scaled up for commercial production.


Mete, FZ; Mia, S; Dijkstra, FA; Abuyusuf, M; Hossain, ASMI. 2015. Synergistic effects of biochar and NPK fertilizer on soybean yield in an alkaline soil. Pedoshpere 25: 713-719 DOI: 10.1016/S1002-0160(15)30052-7 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Biochar effects on legume growth and biological nitrogen fixation have been studied extensively, mostly in acidic soils with laboratory produced biochar. In the present study, a pot experiment in a full factorial experimental design was performed to examine soybean yield and nodulation of three genotypes grown with or without biochar and NPK fertilizers in an alkaline soil. We observed synergistic effects of biochar and NPK fertilizer applications on biomass and seed yields for all three soybean genotypes. Total biomass production and seed yield increased on average by 67% and 54%, respectively, with biochar and by 201% and 182% with NPK fertilizer application compared to the control. When applications of biochar and NPK fertilizer were combined, the increases were 391% and 367%, respectively. However, the biomass production in the control was very low (692 kg ha(-1)) due to a high soil pH (8.80). The nodulation increased with biochar and NPK fertilizer applications, and was largest with the combined application. A correlation was found between leaf chlorophyll content (single photon avalanche diode value) and nodule number. We suggested that the synergistic increase in yield was due to a decrease in soil pH caused by biochar and NPK fertilizer applications thereby increasing P availability in this alkaline soil.

Ali, MA; Kim, PJ; Inubushi, K. 2015. Mitigating yield-scaled greenhouse gas emissions through combined application of soil amendments: A comparative study between temperate and subtropical rice paddy soils. Science of the Total Environment 529: 140-148 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2015.04.090 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Effects of different soil amendments were investigated on methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions, global warming potential (GWP) and yield scaled GWPs in paddy soils of Republic of Korea, Japan and Bangladesh. The experimental treatments were NPK only, NPK + fly ash, NPK + silicate slag, NPK + phosphogypsum(PG), NPK + blast furnace slag (BFS), NPK + revolving furnace slag (RFS), NPK + silicate slag (50%) + RFS (50%), NPK + biochar, NPK + biochar + Azolla-cyanobacteria, NPK + silicate slag + Azolla-cyanobacteria, NPK + phosphogypsum (PG) + Azolla-cyanobacteria. The maximum decrease in cumulative seasonal CH4 emissions was recorded 29.7% and 32.6% with Azolla-cyanobacteria plus phosphogypsum amendments in paddy soils of Japan and Bangladesh respectively, followed by 22.4% and 26.8% reduction with silicate slag plus Azolla-cyanobacteria application. Biochar amendments in paddy soils of Japan and Bangladesh decreased seasonal cumulative N2O emissions by 31.8% and 20.0% respectively, followed by 26.3% and 25.0% reduction with biochar plus Azolla-cyanobacteria amendments. Although seasonal cumulative CH4 emissions were significantly increased by 9.5-14.0% with biochar amendments, however, global warming potentials were decreased by 8.0-12.0% with cyanobacterial inoculation plus biochar amendments. The maximum decrease in GWP was calculated 22.0-30.0% with Azolla-cyanobacteria plus silicate slag amendments. The evolution of greenhouse gases per unit grain yield (yield scaled GWP) was highest in the NPK treatment, which was decreased by 43-50% from the silicate slag and phosphogypsum amendments along with Azolla-cyanobacteria inoculated rice planted soils. Conclusively, it is recommended to incorporate Azolla-cyanobacteria with inorganic and organic amendments for reducing GWP and yield scaled GWP from the rice planted paddy soils of temperate and subtropical countries.

Mia, S; Uddin, N; Al Mamun Hossain, SA; Amin, R; Mete, FZ; Hiemstra, T. 2015.  Production of biochar for soil application: A comparative study of three kiln models. Pedosphere 25: 696-702 DOI: 10.1016/S1002-0160(15)30050-3 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Biochar has potentials for soil fertility improvement, climate change mitigation and environmental reclamation, and charred biomass can be deliberately incorporated into soil for long-term carbon stabilization and soil amendment. Many different methods have been used for biochar production ranging from laboratory to industrial scales. However, in countryside of developing countries, biomass is generally used for cooking but not charred. Biochar production techniques at farmer scale have remained poorly developed. We developed and tested biochar production kilns for farmers with a dimension of 50.8 cm x 38.1 cm (height x diameter), using three different setups for optimizing oxygen (O-2) limitation and syngas circulation: airtight with no syngas circulation (Model I), semi-airtight with external syngas circulation (Model II) and semi-airtight with internal syngas circulation (Model III). A comparative assessment of these biochar production kiln models was made considering biochar pyrolysis time, fuel to biomass ratio, biochar to feedstock ratio and thermogravimetric index (TGI). Among the models, the best quality biochar (TGI = 0.15) was obtained from Model I kiln taking the longest time for pyrolysis (12.5 h) and the highest amount of fuel wood (1.22 kg kg(-1) biomass). Model III kiln produced comparatively good quality biochar (TGI = 0.11), but with less fuel wood requirement (0.33 kg kg(-1) biomass) and shorter pyrolysis time (8.5 h). We also tested Model III kiln in a three times larger size under two situations (steel kiln and pit kiln). The biochar to feedstock ratio (0.38) and quality (TGI = 0.14) increased slightly for the larger kilns. Quality of biochar was found to be mainly related to pyrolysis time. The costs for the biochar stove and pit kiln were US$ 65-77, while it was US$ 154 for the large size steel kiln. Model III kiln can potentially be used for both cooking and biochar production at farmer scale.

Khan KT; Chowdhury MT; Huq SI. 2015. Effects of biochar on the fate of the heavy metals Cd, Cu, Pb and Zn in soil. Bangladesh Journal of Scientific Research. 2015;28(1):17-26. Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: An in vitro incubation study was conducted with soil having seven applications of different treatments of biomass and biochar including a control. The biochar and biomasses were applied at a rate of 5 t ha-1 and incubated at field moisture condition for 30, 60 and 90 days individually in different pots. 0.005M DTPA and 1M HCl extractable cadmium (Cd), copper (Cu), lead (Pb) and zinc (Zn) contents were determined at 30, 60 and 90 days of incubation. The phytoavailable fraction of Cd, Cu, Pb and Zn as extracted with the 0.005M DTPA revealed that biochar did not retain any substantial amount of any of these metals. 1M HCl extracted higher amounts of heavy metals than 0.005M DTPA. Neither biochar nor its source biomass had any sorptive effect on the labile fraction of Pb and Cd present in soil. 1M HCl extracted not only a portion of these metals from the soils but also that present in the biochar and biomass. The general idea that biochars are able to complex metal ions on their surfaces and therefore, reduce bioavailability, however, was not reflected in the present study.


Khan KT; Chowdhury MT; Huq SI. 2014. Application of biochar and fate of soil nutrients. Bangladesh Journal of Scientific Research. 2014; 27(1):11-25. DOI 10.4236/ajcc.2018.71005 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: An in vitro incubation study was conducted with soil having seven applications of different treatments of biomass and biochar including a control. The biochar and biomass were applied at a rate of 5 t/h a and incubated at field moisture condition for 30, 60 and 90 days individually in different pots. Total organic carbon (C), total nitrogen, phytoavailable nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), sulfur (S) and potassium (K) were determined at the end of each incubation period. Total soil organic carbon (SOC), showed a substantial declining trend in all the soils – more prominent in the biochar treated soils than its corresponding biomass treated soils. The pH, total N, phytoavailable N, P, K were substantially higher in the biochar treated soils irrespective of the incubation days compared to the biomass treated soils. Conversely, the available S contents of the biochar treated soils were lower than that of biomass treated soils. The effect of biochar on these nutrients vis-à-vis soil health is discussed.

Khan, TF; Huq, SMI. 2014. Effect of biochar on the abundance of soil bacteria. British Microbiology Research Journal, 4(8): 896-904 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: A pot experiment was conducted to study the effect of biochar on the abundance of soil bacteria and compare it with the source biomass. Seven different treatments and a control were used in the experimental set-up. Three different types of biomass were selected and three types of biochar were produced from them. Both the materials were applied to the soil at a rate of 5t/ha. All treatments were incubated for 30, 60 and 90 days. Cultural, microscopic and biochemical tests were carried out to identify the bacterial isolates in soils treated with biochar and its source biomass. Bacterial isolates identified in soil and in some of the biomasses before treatments were applied include Bacillus badius, Bacillus krulwichiae, Bacillus siralis, Bacillus sylvestris, Bacillus flexus, Aneurinibacillus aneurinilyticus and Bacillus thuringiensis while after incubation periods, seven new isolates were identified. This was true for the biomass treated soils where additional one to two isolates reappeared. Conversely, in the biochar treated soils, most of the isolates disappeared except Bacillus badius that survived in all soils till 90 days. Because of its tolerant nature, it was further investigated for cellulase enzyme activity. Interestingly, the isolate did not show any such activity. Conclusively, biochar application may exert negative effect on the distribution and proliferation of soil bacteria with possible effect on soil quality and crop production.

Mia, S; Abuyusuf, M; Sattar, MA; Islam, ABMS; Hiemstra, T; Jeffery, S. 2014. Biochar amendment for high nitrogen and phosphorous bioavailability and its potentiality of use in Bangladesh agriculture: a review. Journal of the Patuakhali Science and Technical University 5(l): 145-156 Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Biochar application to soil is increasingly attracting scientists’ attention for its multifaceted benefits from carbon sequestration to soil fertility improvement. However, the mechanistic understanding of high soil fertility and consequently high yield is still to be elucidated. The present study was aimed at reviewing the present state of knowledge regarding biochar effects on N and P availability with especial attention to potentiality, feasibility and justification of biochar addition to our soil. Biochar addition increases the mineral N retention due to NH4+ capture at cation exchange sites, NO3- adsorption in the base functional group at high pH or due to physical NO3- sorption. Microbial immobilization is also responsible for N retention and recycling. Phosphorous availability also increases after biochar amendment as it increases soil pH and releases high charged small molecule humic acids. Biochar addition to our soil would be a potential option for increasing soil organic matter content, fertlhzer use efficiency if it could be produced from huge amount of agro-industrial, municipal and house hold waste.

Mahmud K; Chowhdhury MS; Noor N; Huq SI. 2014. Effects of different sources of biochar application on the emission of a number of gases from soil. Canadian Journal Pure & Applied Sciences 8(2):2813-2824. Expand ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Addition of biochar to soils has the potentials to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases from soil. The primary objectives of this study were to see the impacts of biochar and the corresponding biomass application on the emission of carbon dioxide (CO2), carbon monoxide (CO), phosphine (PH3) and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from soil investigated in a closed container experiment. Three replications of seven different treatments were applied: i) soil only (control), soil incorporated with – ii) rice husk, iii) biochar produced from rice husk, iv) straw, v) biochar from straw, vi) saw dust and vii) biochar produced from saw dust. The study reveals that addition of biochar had significant effects (P<0.05) on reducing CO2 and PH3 emission while no statistically significant effects on VOCs emanation was evident. Application of biochar could not suppress the CO emissions. Our study indicates that, different types of biochars have different effects on the emission of different gases.

Studies In Progress Using Akha TLUD Biochar

“Biochar for Food Security, Livelihood and Combating Climate Change”

A seminar held at the Bangladesh Agricultural Research Council, Dhaka, July 2018.
Abstracts of  Oral Papers

Download Seminar Proceedings (PDF, 1.6 Mb): summaries of the presentations, and a list of participants.

Haque, Md. Mojammel; Morshed, Md. Monjur; Alam, Mohammad Saiful; Kamal, Mohammed Zia Uddin; Rahman, G,K,M, Mustafizur; Rahman, Md. Mizanur. 2018. Impact of Biochar on Soil Fertility and Crop Productivity in Shibalaya Upazila of Manikganj District. Department of Soil Science, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Agricultural University (BSMRAU), Gazipur, Bangladesh. Expand ABSTRACT

    ABSTRACT: An experiment in collaboration with Christian Commission for Development in Bangladesh was conducted at the farmer’s field in Shibalaya Upazila of Manikganj district during June 2017 to June 2018 using four vegetables (brinjal, tomato, cauliflower and chilli) to study the comparative effectiveness of different rates of biochar and recommended inorganic fertilizer on crop yields and soil fertility.  There were five treatments viz. control, recommended fertilizer (RF), biochar 1 t ha-1 + RF, biochar 3 t ha-1 + RF and biochar 5 t ha-1 + RF laid out in a randomized complete block design with three replications. The pH and moisture contents of the study soils were increased and bulk density decreased with the application of higher rate of biochar in all crops. Most incredible changes were observed in the total organic carbon contents in soils where carbon contents were increased by 25 to 33% from the initial levels. The highest yields of brinjal, tomato, cauliflower and chilli were found 67, 74, 42 & 4.5 t ha-1, respectively when biochar was applied @ 5 t ha-1 along with inorganic fertilizers. In terms of soil fertility and crop productivity application of biochar @ 5 t ha-1 was found promising and could be recommended as an effective soil management practice.

Hasnat, Momtahina; Rahman, Md. Mizanur; Rahman, GKM Mustafizur; Haque, Md. Manjurul. 2018. Role of Nitrogen Fertilizer on Mineralization of Organic Materials. Department of Soil Science & Department of Environmental Science Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Agricultural University, Gazipur, Bangladesh. Expand ABSTRACT

    ABSTRACT: Studies on the effect of nitrogen (N) fertilizer in organic materials mineralization and carbon (C) sequestration in soil are scarce. Therefore, this study quantified the release of C and N and determine the C degradation rate constant (k) of crop residues, compost and biochars as influenced by different levels of N fertilizer in a laboratory experiment during 22 November 2016 to 22 May 2017. The experiment comprising two factors viz. six types of organic materials (rice straw, maize leaf, rice husk biochar, eucalyptus biochar, mahogany biochar and vermicompost) and three rates of N fertilizer (0, 0.05 and 0.10 g N kg-1 soil) was laid out in a factorial RCBD with two replications. Rice husk biochar was prepared in BSMRAU, while eucalyptus and mahogany biochars were provided by CCDB, Manikganj produced as by-product from Akha cooking stove in local farm households.Organic materials considering 2.5 g C kg-1 soil and N fertilizer were mixed well and placed in pots for six incubation periods of 30, 60, 90, 120, 150 and 180 days. The trend of organic carbon contents was decreasing order with irregular fashion until 180 days of incubation in all types of treatments and the lowest C content was found at 180 days of incubation. Under different level of N application, OC contents finally reached lowest level at 180 days of incubation. During 180 days of incubation the highest amount of OC was observed in 0 g N kg-1 soil (1.28%) and the lowest in 0.1g N kg-1 soil (1.06%). Carbon degradation rate constants (k) of different organic materials in the present study varied from 0.00502 to 0.00635 day-1. The lowest ‘k’ value was found in the mahogany biochar applied soil, while the highest was under the rice husk biochar used soil. The highest k value was found in the 0.1 g N kg-1 soil (0.00607), while the lowest was in the 0 g N kg-1 soil (0.00549). The relationship between ‘k’ value and mineralization is reciprocal i.e. the higher the k value the slower is the mineralization of organic material. Organic carbon contents in soils decreased with the advancement of incubation periods and higher N rates. Nitrate and ammonium nitrogen contents found higher in soils at 60-90 days of incubation under higher N rates. The lowest ‘k’ value attributed in the mahogany biochar followed by maize leaf, vermicompost, rice straw, eucalyptus biochar and rice husk biochar. Higher N rates resulted lower ‘k’ value and contributed to faster mineralization of organic materials. Rice husk and eucalyptus biochars along with optimum N fertilizer needs to be ensured in crop production which could limit mineralization and supply long lasting and stable carbon in soil.

Murad, K.F.I.; Alam, M.K.; Alam M.J.; Sabuz, A.A. 2018. Potentiality of Biochar to Enhance Productivity of Tomato Cultivated under Deficit Irrigation. Bangladesh Agricultural Research Institute (BARI). Expand ABSTRACT

    ABSTRACT: This study was conducted at the research field of Irrigation and water Management Division (IWM) of Bangladesh Agricultural Research Institute (BARI), Gazipur to understand the potentiality of biochar in improving productivity of drip irrigated tomato cultivated under deficit irrigation condition, and its impacts on some soil properties. BARI Tomato-14 cultivar was used for this experiment. There were five different irrigation treatments; T1: full irrigation (FI) with biochar @10 t/ha; T2: deficit irrigation (75% of FI) with biochar; T3: deficit irrigation (50% of FI) with biochar; T4: FI with no biochar; T5: 75% of FI with no biochar; T6: 50% of FI with no biochar. The experiment is laid out in a Randomized Complete Block Design (RCBD), where each treatment was replicated thrice. Biochar was produced by Akha (krishi bandob chula) using different biomass from working area of Christian Commission for development in Bangladesh (CCDB). Data on different growth and yield attributes of tomato were collected during the crop growing season and after harvesting. Necessary soil data were also collected periodically to determine the soil-moisture content, available nitrogen (N) status as well as the microbial-respiration of soil during the experimental period. The obtained result suggests that deficit irrigation reduced the plant height (highest in full irrigation > 75% irrigation > lowest in 50% irrigation); whereas, biochar application improved the plant heights (T1>T4, T2>T5 and T3>T6). The number of branches per plant did not show statistically significant difference among the irrigation treatments. In contrast to the plant height, root length was found higher in non-biochar treatments (T4, T5, T6) than that of their opposite biochar treatments (T1, T2, T3), where it increased as the water deficiency increased (T1<T2<T3 or T4<T5<T6). Again, both wet biomass and dry biomass weight was found highest in T1, where the lowest values of both attributes were found in T6. On the other hand, the number of fruit per plant, unit fruit weight and marketable yield were found highest in T1 followed by T4, T2, T3, T5 and T6. A significant yield reduction of about 5.6% and 10.5% between T1 and T3, T4 and T6, respectively suggests that irrigation deficiency (by 50%) significantly reduced the production of tomato. Moreover, the marketable yield of T1>T4 (3.7%), T2>T5 (6.0%) and T3>T6 (7.9%) illustrates that biochar potentially increased the crop production, and it showed better performance when the irrigation deficiency increased. In addition, water productivity (WP) was found 5.5% higher in T1 than T4, 10.2% higher in T2 than T5, and 10.6% higher in T3 than T6. Soil moisture content dropped sharply in non-biochar treatments under deficit irrigation; however, biochar improved the moisture content status under the similar circumstances. The hetero-tropic respiration (CO2 emission) were found higher in biochar amended treatment, where it was recorded highest in T2 and lowest in T6. Biochar with FI (T1) had the highest available NH4-N over the season followed by biochar with 75 % FI (T2). But, available NO3-N was highest in T2, while T6 had the lowest value. No significant variation on the fruit quality parameters were found between these two treatments. While carotenoids and total soluble solids (TSS) were also found slightly higher in biochar amended treatment (T1), both Vitamin-C and Tritable acidity contents were marginally higher in treatment without biochar (T4). Overall, biochar found to be promising in improving the growth and yield of tomato grown under deficit irrigation regimes, as well as the health of the soil. However, no discreet conclusion can be drawn unless the research is replicated for few more years.

Sen, Ranjit; Masud, M. M.; Islam, Md. Mahbubul; Ferdous, Janatul. 2018. Biochar Production by Akha and its Impact on Productivity of Tomato, Maize, Okra and Chili Grown in Acid Soil. Bangladesh Agricultural Research Institute & Christian Commission for Development in Bangladesh. Expand ABSTRACT

    ABSTRACT: Pyrolysis is the most common technology employed to produce biochar, and also occurs in the early stages of the combustion and gasification processes. Different types of biochar making device produced under zero-oxygen conditions or oxygen limiting condition but costs associated with logistics and opportunity costs from diversion from energy or an active form in soil demand certainty and predictability of the agronomic return. Practical biochar making effective low-cost technology called AKHA (agriculture friendly cook stove) developed by the Bangladesh Biochar Initiative (BBI) foster by Christian Commission for Development in Bangladesh (CCDB), its ability to make biochar at the same time as cooking. In the present study, a pot experiment was conducted in Manda, Daudpur and Shivalaya CCDB office to study the effect of biochar (produce from AKHA) on the productivity of Tomato and Maize in Rabi season and Chilli and Okra in Kharif season of 2016-2017. There were three biochar levels, viz., 10g/ kg soil, 20g/ kg soil and 10% of pot soil volume. Plant development in the biochar-treated pots was significantly enhanced as compared with the un-amended controls where 100% recommended fertilizer had been used for respective crops. The incorporation of biochars produced from different wood source increased the soil pH, and their ameliorating effects varied due to raw materials of biochars. The results on the growth and yield parameters of the tomato showed that the biochar had the significant effect on plant height, number of fruit, length and breadth of fruit, individual fruit weight and fresh yield. Among the three wood mix biochar levels, biochar @ 20 g/kg soil showed the better performance and increased soil nutrients of Ca, Mg and K, but also enhanced the uptake of Ca, Mg, K and P by plants simultaneously.
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