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Composting and the use of compost offer several potential benefits including improved manure handling, pathogen destruction, enhanced soil tilth and fertility, and reduced environmental risk. Composting is, a broadest term, the biological reduction of organic wastes to humus. Whenever a plant or animal dies, its remains are attacked by microorganisms and larger soil fauna and are eventually reduced to an earthlike substance that forms a beneficial growing environment for plant roots. This process repeated continuously in endless profusion and in every part of the world where plant grow, is part of the overrecurring natural process that supports all terrestrial life. The word compost comes from Old French, bit in sixteenth and 17th centuries, various spellings were used such as compass, compess, compaste, composture and others, (Deborah and Gershung, 1992 and Wallace and Terry, 1998). The main part of waste production being introduced to soil has always been of organic nature, its humification and mineralization contributed largely to the physical and chemical oil properties favoring growth and nutrition of plants, (Arafat et al, 1992). The use of organic manures is important not only in the immediate context of economy in fertilizer use but also in the general interest of maintaining soil at optimum level of fertility and productivity of crop yields satisfactory at high levels, (Patil and Kale, 1983). There are a few ways to let nature make compost for us under or over the ground, in bins, boxes, pits, bags, and barrels, in strips, in sheets, in trenches, in 14 months or 14 days, indoors or outdoors. All composting methods aim simply to meet the needs of the microorganisms that do all the work of turning raw organic matter into humus. Those basics need are air, moisture, energy food (carbon) and protein food (nitrogen) in the right proportion, and warmth. Any method involving a pile also needs to be minimum size or critical mass so that high enough temperature can be maintained. Beyond that, we will want to 3
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ensure that there is a culture of the right organisms ready to get started. Although innumerable refinements are possible as long as keep these basic requirements in mind, we can improvise a variety of ways to achieve the desired goal, which is the creation of moist, fragrant fertile humus, (Deborah and Gershung, 1992 and Wallace and Terry, 1998). Furthermore, obtaining high food quality and production as well. A FAO study (1999) reported that the explicit goal of organic agriculture is to contribute to the enhancement of sustainability. The soil and water protection and the conservation techniques used to combat erosion; compaction, salinization and other forms of degradation are evident in organic farming. Mixed and relay cropping provides a more continuous soil cover and thus a shorter period when the soil is fully exposed to the erosive power of the rain, wind and sun. Terracing to conserve moisture, and soil are used in appropriate situation and particular attention is paid to irrigated areas and to on-farm water management. Properly managed organic farming reduces or eliminates water pollution and helps conserve water and soil on the farm (although improper use of manure can seriously pollute water). 2.1. COMPOSTING Composting is a viable means of transferring various organic wastes into products that can be used safely and beneficially as biofertilizers and soil conditioners. One of the definitions of composting referred to its effect as a biological decomposition of organic materials by bacteria and other organisms, (Frank et al, 2000) and can be conducted by either aerobic or anaerobic methods. However, the aerobic mode is generally preferred, since it proceeds more rapidly and provides greater pathogen reduction because higher temperatures are attained. An example of as aerobic composting method is that developed by USDA scientists. The method is widely referred to as the Beltsville Aerated Pile Method, and utilizes a static pile with forced aeration to maintain aerobic, thermophilic conditions, (Willson, 1989). 4
Fungi. Determine advantages and disadvantages over time of using compost as a fertilizer from a farmer's point of view. Address questions about soil health and its relationship to food quality (nutritional and storage) and human health. Assess the value of composting in recycling farmyard manures and urban organic residues. Furthermore. Although this results in some loss of N. leaves. and food waste into a soil-like material called compost. 3. 6. The application of atrazine at recommended rates did not 5
. composting converts the nitrogen contained in manure into a more stable organic form. Angers et al. Also. 1995. Compare economic and energy costs of compost compared to raw manure and conventional fertilizer and. N2O and CH4 to the atmosphere during composting of source-separated organic household wastes in Sweden by Beck-Friis. Identify agricultural uses for finished composts and assure their use is environmentally sound. Composting high-carbon manure/bedding mixtures lowers the carbon/nitrogen ratio to acceptable levels for land application. Millipedes. 5.Review of Literature
Rynk (1992) has defined composting as a biological process in which microorganisms (Bacteria.2. Actinomycetes. BENEFITS OF COMPOSTING AND COMPOST 1. 2. assessed the impact of compost and atrazine applications on soil microbial biomass and activity in a sandy soil used for sweet corn production in Canada. paper. 4. They found that compost application rapidly improved soil quality through increases in microbial biomass and activity. and Earthworms) convert organic materials such as manure. what remains is less susceptible to leaching and further ammonia losses. the excess carbon in the manure causes nitrogen in the soil to be temporarily unavailable to the crop. Examine the effects of compost use on soil health and crop quality over time. and soil water content. that was proved by an investigation carried out to study the emission of NH3. 2001. 2. highly bedded manure's have a high carbon-tonitrogen. Centipedes. When applied to the land directly. the heat generated by composting process reduces the number of weed seeds contained in the manure. sludge.
1992). and potassium. The temporal variation in microbial biomass was partly related to soil water content. sorghum. COMMON MATERIALS TO BE USED IN COMPOSTING Materials for composting are all around us. as soil amendments. (Aly.1. plant nutrients are mineralized into plant-available form. barely. Much of the nutrients bound in organic forms will be made "plant-available" as the organic matter decomposes. Most composts contain relatively low concentrations of one or more nutrients and are not necessarily considered good "fertilizers". Nearly anything that once lived (and is thus organic) is a candidate for the compost heap. 1996). Compost can provide valuable nutrients and organic matter to soil. but a "timed-release" effect occurs in the later. (Abou Bakr and Omar. Hassan. the C/N ratio of these residues are wide and they need to be mixed with others having narrow C/N ratio.3. 1999 and Laos et al. maize and sugarcane. trees. and malodors are abated. pathogens are destroyed. bananas and oilseed plants can also be used in the compost heap.3. and P2O5) and organic forms. Nitrogen and phosphorous in compost are generally found in both plantavailable forms (NO3. (Parr and Hornick. slowrelease of nutrients "bound" initially in organic forms. organic wastes are decomposed. Dagar and Thampan (1995) reported 6
. 2000). 1999. Utilizable biomass and other solid wastes that can be used in composting may be classified under the following principle categories: 2. These wastes of shrubs. available nitrogen. During the composting process.Review of Literature
affect soil microbial biomass and activity. depending upon the feedstocks (raw materials used) and upon compost management. however. NH4. wheat. phosphorus. A chemical analysis of a representative sample of compost will indicate its total nitrogen. Also. 2. readily available nutrients in compost can be much lower than in raw waste. Therefore. CROP RESIDUES These residues include rice. Generally. they are good sources of organic matter.
The extent of degraded and problem soils in India is outlined.2. and organic residues. oil cakes. The greater agronomic effectiveness of sulphocompost could be attributed to the improved nitrogen-use efficiency increased PR dissolution and improved S nutrition. there is about 50 millions ton/year of these 7
. chemical impairment. the plant. Problems include water logging. but also increases the agronomic effectiveness of manure and also stated that manures have high nutrient contents and some other physical parameters. sugar factory wastes and sugarcane waste. phospho-compost. 2. Winter cabbage and summer maize were used as test crops. Distribution of NO3-N in the soil profile of field plots indicated greater potential for winter leaching of N from urea than poultry manure which could be the reason for the improved residual value of the manure reflected in summer maize yields. LIVESTOCK WASTES AND MANURES Many researchers underlined the enormous benefits of the application of organic wastes and farmyard manures and reported that manures are a valuable means for transferring nutrients to the soil. Green manure and other organic amendments have been used in the reclamation of sodic soils. Organic amendments include: livestock wastes. green manures. Results from field experiments indicated that composting poultry manure with so and PR not only reduces environmental pollution associated with manure application. erosion. the phosphocompost and sulphocompost were approximately 12 % and 60 % as effective as urea and both composts were equally effective as urea for the second season's maize crop. For the first season's winter cabbage. crop residues. as well as. 1995 to examine the agronomic value of poultry manure composted in the presence of both phosphate rock (PR) and elemental sulphur (So) (sulphocompost) and PR alone (phosphocompost). Two field experiments were conducted by Mahimairaja et al. and desertification.Review of Literature
that organic amendments are important in the reclamation of problem soils for crop production.3. In Egypt. salinization.
However. physical and biological characteristics of town refuse compost and chicken manures were investigated. Elgharably (2002) reported that filer mud cake. which represent the waste product in wheat milling industry. colloidal. Also. he found that chicken manure has a larger content of nutrients and a greater water-holding capacity and is also easier to handle. sugar industry wastes contain high amounts of NPK and micronutrients and 8
. vinasse and bagasse ash. (1995) studied some chemical. which render its application to soil more advantageous than does town refuse compost. very complex organic material. Other parts of the organic matter are converted to humus. P. Organic matter when added to soil is attacked by microorganisms and transform into other organic compounds. The results showed that both manures contain the principal elements needed for plant growth. 2. Bagasse and rice husks obtained from sugarcane processing and rice milling plants are of great importance in this regard. which remains in soil.3. which increases the ability to hold water available to the plant. 35. a black or dark brown. Also.3. 1997). and K in such amount are 302. (Mekail.Review of Literature
wastes. (1976) reported that cation exchange capacity (CEC) of sand soil increased as much as three folds as a result of the addition of sludge and compost. Humus is a very valuable soil component. and through its very high CEC. Akalona. AGRO-INDUSTRIAL WASTES Mainly organic residues generated in the food processing industry are of special interest. 1987) and oilcakes as by-products from oilseed milling industry. chicken manure contains characteristics. (Kaloosh. El-Shinawy et al. 1994) are useful in compost preparation. (Zein El-Abdeen. 1986). (Simpson. Much of the carbon is converted to CO2 and makes no longer-term contribution to the organic matter content in the soil. reduces the leaching of nutrients. and 7 millions kg/year respectively. and the nutrient of N. Epstein et al.
1996. 1992. Cat manure is even more hazardous. cinders and ash. DOGES AND CATS FEES They should not be used on the compost pile. Mahmoud. Warman and Termeer. concerns about disease pathogens make the use of such a material dubious at best for home garden. 2. Buyuksonmez et al. putrescible and paper fraction only in urban refuse can be used in composting. MATERIALS TO BE AVOIDED IN COMPOSTING Although nearly any organic material can contribute to good compost.4.4. Vegetable. Although dog manure is as rich in nutrients as other manure. there are some that should be avoided. On the other hand. 1985. 1995). (Murillo et al.4. and wheat crop due to their residual effect. it may carry organisms parasitic to humans. 2. HUMAN FEES They should not be used unless they have been properly treated and permitted to age sufficiently even then.4.1. All other materials can cause problems to the composting process. 2. 2000). the agricultural wastes contain large amount of vegetable and putrescible wastes.Review of Literature
significantly increased the yield of maize crop due to their direct effect at the beginning of the season. Sakr. plastic. (Deborah et al. Mahmoud. paper and cardboard. and others to be used only in a limited amounts. 2000 and Storm. El-Kobbia et al. 2. It contains food wastes. URBAN WASTES Urban refuse comprises the solid waste from human dwelling.2. Also. it is more difficult and less pleasant to handle than the mixed bedding and manure of cattle and sheep. however.3. 1996. Last statement came in agreement with what previously published by Badran. metals and commercial refuse from offices. Urine alone can be used quit safely. (1979) concluded that addition of fresh or composted town refuse increased organic matter in clay soil. It also contains glass. 9
. 1996. 1994 and El-Sisi. especially to pregnant women and small children. 1983. In addition.
Gl. MATERIALS THAT WILL NOT READILY DECOMPOSE Materials such as large pieces of wood. heavy cardboard should not be used in large amounts unless they are shredded first. basalt and tafla. toxic material and pesticide treated wastes.Review of Literature
2. brush cornstalk. Rock phosphates are excellent materials for enriching the mineral content of our compost. Cultivar Phule G-12 was firstly treated with 2 g captan per kg seeds. rock phosphate (RP). Other rock powders such as granite. Gg. dry matter and yield of chickpea were investigated. 1992 and Aly. are sources of potassium and micronutrients are similarly made more available to plants when first consumed by compost organisms. then with the 4 vesicular arbuscular mycorrhizal (VAM) 10
. large quantities of rags. oyster and calm shells. Acal. 2.7. the P-solubilizing culture Microphos. MATERIALS TO BE USED IN COMPOSTING ENRICHMENT There are many materials could be used to increase the compost’s NPK content. Microbial action makes their nutrients more readily available than they would be if added directly to the soil. the effects of 4 P sources (single superphosphate. Acaulospora sp. bone meal. Specific materials can also be added by using plants that are especially rich in those elements in our compost. a Gl+Gg+Acal mixture. if the highway is a busy one. bone meal and press mud) and 6 microbial treatments (Glomus mosseae. and an uninoculated control) on the nodulation.. In a field trial. plant might be coated with lead emission from passing traffic. limestone. dried blood. Also plant debris from roadsides of the highway.6.5. Gigaspora calospora. MATERIALS INHIBITING THE BIOCHEMICAL PROCESSES Materials such as large amounts of grease and oil. (Misra and Sahu. 1999). Among the materials and products available are bagged manure. many gardeners find it worth the expense to ensure a high nutrient level in their composts. Although it is not necessary to add these materials to the heap. 2. cottonseed meal. seaweed and rock powders and other natural product that are valuable to the heap because of their nutrient level.
Organic activators are materials containing high amounts of nitrogen in various forms.83 q/ha). RP recorded the highest values for available N and P (118 and 25. 2000). (1997) that FYM consists of three main groups of components. cattle and horse manure's contain the lowest quantities of these essential elements. Since all the necessary microorganisms are already present in 11
. total dry matter (44. roots (500 mg per plant).50). Data were collected on available N and P. solid excreta of the animal and liquid excreta or urine. chicken manure is the highest in N. (Meshram et al. Cow manure is an intermediate in protein. There are two ways in which an activator may influence a compost heap: 1. Among the P treatments. dry weight of nodules (157.91 per plant).21 q/ha). thereby providing extra food for microorganisms. Seeds were subsequently sown in fields treated with VAM chlamydospores (250 spores/50 ml soil suspension) and infected root segments of guinea grass. ACTIVATORS TO BE IN COMPOSTING Compost activators are any substance stimulates biological decomposition in a compost pile. shoot dry weight (6.25 kg/ha).87 kg/ha. and K as well as the most important elements required for plant growth. By introducing strains of microorganisms that are effective in breaking down organic matter and 2. Sheep manure is high in protein. and urea.Review of Literature
fungal treatments at 25 g/kg seed or with 50 g Microphos per kg seeds. bedding or litter. such as proteins.7.42 mg per plant). 2.97 g per plant). total dry matter (42. grain yield and the total dry matter at harvesting. There are organic and artificial activators. dried blood. shoots (6. It has been stated by Naguib et al. Horse manure is low in protein. and supplied with nitrogen (urea) and the 4 P sources. garbage. respectively) and the highest values for number of nodules per plant (29. compost and urine. By increasing the N and micronutrients content of the heap. shoots and roots per plant at 50% flowering. Seeds treated with Gl + Gg + Acal had the highest available N and P (128 and 26. amino acids. P. dry weight of nodules. Some examples of the natural activators are manure.50 q/ha) and grain yield (35.08 q/ha) and grain yield (37. nodulation.1.
1998. 1999). and composting materials. 1997 and Hauka et al. the effect of EM on onion and sheep production on a commercial organic farm in New Zealand is reported. Lactobacillus. Ramaswami and Son. 2000). In a trial in 1995.3 ha of onions was intensively sprayed with EM from 6 weeks post emergence to 4 weeks before lifting. soil. El-Ghozoli. Such a treatment induced high yields (53 tons/ha). (Deborah and Gershung. FUNCTIONS OF BENEFICIAL MICROORGANISMS (EM) • • • • • • • • • • Fixation of atmospheric nitrogen Decomposition of organic wastes and residues Suppression of soil-borne pathogens Recycling and increased availability of plant nutrients Degradation of toxicants including pesticides Production of antibiotics and other bioactive compounds Production of simple organic molecules for plant uptake Complexation of heavy metals to limit plant uptake Solubilization of insoluble nutrient sources Production of polysaccharides to improve soil aggregation The effect of the application of effective microorganisms (EM). Aly. 2001). Rhodopseudomonas. It was shown that growth and activity of the root system were promoted as soil properties improved and as a consequence the plants became more resistance to soil water deficits. 1994. In 1996.2. 1992. 1994.7. Naguib et al. The highest percentage of first grade onions and the second highest yield were observed in the EM treatment. 2. 1. 1999 and Taha. the effect of EM and organic fertilizers on onion production was investigated.Review of Literature
manure. (Xu-HuiLian et al.
(Higa and Parr. and the problems of broad acre application of EM are discussed. Also. Streptomyces and Aspergillus on the soilroot interface water potential of sweet corn was studied. there is no benefit to be gained from introducing strains in the compost from the previous heap or a generous amount of healthy topsoil. 1993. Abdalla.
1999). addition of molasses as a carbon and energy source. The quality of the fermented organic fertilizer depends on the initial water content. rice bran. The yield of brown rice from EM inoculation was higher for the standard fertilizer rate and lower for the higher rate of organic fertilizer.. There was no significant difference between the ewe live-weights. photosynthetic bacteria and yeasts. EM inoculation increased kernel enlargement after the panicle formation stage and also increased ear number and length and kernel number. 0. EM inoculation increased the glutinousness and the total quality index of glutinous rice varieties. rice husks. and 13
. Yamada et al. Effective microorganisms were utilized as the microbial inoculants. and a C: N ratio of 10.0% available phosphorus. Also. Tests showed that the fermented organic fertilizer contained large populations of propagated Lactobacillus spp. oilseed rape mill cake. 1. EM lambs had higher liveweight gains for the first 3 and last weighing and has a higher overall live-weight gain.Review of Literature
Fungal diseases were a major problem in storage causing loss of 50 % of the crop. The growth rates of sheep and lambs grazing on EM treated pasture and drinking water was compared in a separate trial.1 % of mineral nitrogen mainly in the ammonium form. high concentrations of intermediate compounds such as organic acids and amino acids. (2000) studied the chemical. Iwaishi (2000) reported that the effect of an organic fertilizer inoculated with Effective Microorganisms (EM) on the growth. Internal parasite faecal egg numbers were lower in EM-treated lambs. yield and quality of 13 paddy-rice varieties varying with maturation period was studied. (Chamberlain et al. which is a mixed culture of beneficial microorganisms. EM application recommendations for Asia-Pacific Natural Agricultural Network (APNAN) countries are difficult to implement in a New Zealand farming context. The quality estimation methods employed addressed the mechanistic basis for beneficial effects of soil improvement and crop yield. and fish meal that was inoculated and fermented with microbial inoculants (Effective Microorganisms). physical and microbiological properties of an organic fertilizer comprising molasses. Actinomycetes.
8.Review of Literature
the microbial inoculants. and nitrogen for protein synthesis. An important problem is how to estimate the degree of compost maturity. water content. are too wet to maintain air spaces within the composting pile. the direct effects of the introduced microorganisms. 2. (Willson. 1996). such as sawdust. pH level. while higher ratios can slow the rate of composting. microorganisms require carbon for growth and energy. C : N ratio. Lower ratios can result in the loss of ammonia (NH3). the rate of decomposition of organic wastes depends on a proper balance of carbon and nitrogen. FACTORS AFFECTING THE COMPOSTING PROCESS Composting provides as appropriate porosity. leaves. Dry and fibrous materials. aeration rate and the physical structure of organic materials are important factors influencing the rate and efficiency of composting. (Kayhanian and Rich. 1989). There are number of factors which affect the composting process and which must be within an optimum range if aerobic. Thus. 2. Temperature. The beneficial effects of the fermented organic fertilizer on soil fertility and crop growth will probably depend upon the organic fraction. finely chopped straw or peat moss. and to reduce water content and/or to change the C : N ratio. According 14
. Rapid composting is achieved when wastes or mixture of wastes have a C : N ratio of between 1 : 25 and 1 : 30.8. CARBON : NITROGEN RATIO During composting. thermophilic composting is to proceed rapidly and effectively. are good bulking agents for composting wet manure or organic residues. or other organic residues. and indirect effects of microbially-synthesized metabolites. Composting processes should be under controlled conditions. Homogeneous manure solids can be composted alone without mixing with bulk materials. while at the same time pathogens and weed seeds are killed and the organic materials become stabilized. density and moisture content so easily degraded components of the substrates are broken down. Bulking agents are needed to provide structural support when manure solids.1. The medium pH appears to be of reliable fermentation quality for producing this organic fertilizer.
the C/N ratio of sufficiently well composted material varies widely from 5 to 20 depending on the type of raw materials. TEMPERATURE As composting proceeds.2.8. decomposition will be aerobic but slow. The optimum content of organic wastes or mixtures of wastes for rapid aerobic. a complete composting process may take two to six months. 1995 and Illmer and Schinner.3. During dry weather. If the moisture content is below 40 %. MOISTURE CONTENT Moisture content between 40 % and 60 % is a good target range. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations for composting municipal waste require that the temperature be maintained at 65 C or above for at least three days to destroy pathogens. they may be insufficient air space (because of excess moisture) to sustain aerobic decomposition and anaerobic conditions may prevail. 1997). thermophilic composting ranges from 40 to 60 % (by weight). Some moisture will be removed from the mixture during the composting process. but not be soupy. The water content of mature compost should be less 15
. 2. Depending on the ambient temperature. but excessive moisture inhibits gas exchange and may result in anaerobic conditions. 2. microbial activity causes temperatures to increase from mesophilic range (20 – 40 C) into the thermophilic range (> 40 C). The compost mixture should feel moist to the touch. Consider protecting the compost piles from excessive rainfall or pounded water. (Mathur et al. (Murillo et al.8. or a dry bulking material can be used to absorb moisture. Optimum temperatures for rapid aerobic composting from 55 to 70 C. the mixture may need water added to maintain moisture. Very wet feedstocks may be dried before mixing. Moisture is needed for microbial activity. Temperature is the most common indicator of how composting is progressing. Elevated temperature is necessary to destroy pathogens and weed seeds in manure or other organic materials.Review of Literature
to Chanyasak and Kupota (1981). If it is above 60 %. A temperature of 75 C within the compost pile is needed to destroy weed seeds. and if other factors are favorable. 1993).
biological activity will tend to neutralize the feedstock pH as the composting process progresses. and based on typical compost application rates.5. it is understood that the addition of compost can affect the pH of soil and growing media. if materials with a source. In the early most active stage of the composting step. In the feedstock preparation step pH is largely impacted by pH of the feedstock materials.5.0 to 7.4. and products of decomposition may alter pH over time. This pH depression is followed by an increase. are composted. This is the result of aerobic surface degradation of large particles and anaerobic degradation below the surface. The C : N ratio should be less than 20. then organic acid build up will tend to occur. During the composting process. such as wood ash or certain industrial residuals. the pH of compost must be known. which buffers pH. Specific plant species can flourish when grown within a specific pH range. For example. pH Measuring the concentration of the active hydrogen can be important. Therefore.Review of Literature
than 50 percent and preferably in the range of 30 to 35 percent. The pH of compost products typically ranges from about 5. However. pH of the resulting compost product will tend to be above neutral. accompanied most often by a lack of adequate aeration to supply oxygen and displace carbon dioxide and other gases. the pH of the finished product is in a narrower range of 6. if prolonged anaerobic conditions persist in the composting and/or compost curing and storage steps. if lime or ferrous salts are used to dewater biosolids in municipal applications. which in turn will affect soil maintenance practices or growing system management. as particle size reduces and microbial populations shift from dominance by bacteria to actinomycetes and fungi. thus depressing pH. 2. pH of the resultant product will tend to be 16
.8. and the oxygen content within the composting mass improves. Near-neutral pH is preferred for most efficient microbial activity. More commonly. it is not uncommon for a temporary pH depression to occur.0 to 8. to estimate the effect. Similarly. Microorganisms tend to modify their environment.
The final product can be adjusted by the addition of amendments.5. Some food processing wastes and industrial wastes may exhibit levels of alkalinity or acidity that inhibit nutrient availability or microbial activity. yard trimmings that are rich in soft wood.6 to 1. However. Research has shown that the optimum pH for rapid composting of various wastes or mixtures of wastes ranges from 5 to 9. (Sarapatka et al. the biggest pH impact tends to be the lack of aeration and the resultant formation of organic acids. 1993). most composting systems are aerobic and so require adequate air throughout the pile. on the other hand. The optimum airflow 0. or anaerobically. by use of a suitable bulking material and by frequent turning to break up clumps and air channels as an aid to aeration whether by forced aeration or convective aeration. through the activities of a different type of organism. Aerobic bacteria are also thought to more causing either acidic or putrefaction of the heap producing bad odorous. Chemical analyses of material samples will indicate whether pH or nutrients need to be adjusted. thereby depressing product pH. leaves. AERATION / OXYGEN SUPPLY It is possible to make compost without air. Decreasing pile heights to six feet or less to avoid slump and compaction is a method that can be used to improve the oxygen content of the material. Positive aeration can be provided during compost curing and storage using small blowers providing air to a diffuser system beneath the piles. such as liming agents to increase pH or sulfur products to lower pH if desired for specific applications. Retaining bulking material in the pile until just prior to distribution will help provide the needed porosity.8. thereby decreasing acid production. 2. If. or pine needles are the primary feedstock materials.8 17
. the resultant product will tend to be more acidic.Review of Literature
above neutral. Another common problem occurs during the compost-curing step when the lack of aeration and large storage piles tend to increase production of acids. Turning compost-curing piles for aeration can improve pile oxygen percent. Product pH can be improved by maintaining pile porosity and free airspace during composting and compost curing. During the composting and compost curing steps.
and food processing wastes. dairy manure. 1993 and Taha. If 18
. Ground (shredded) yard wastes. such as wood chips. bark.8. and (2) broiler litter containing wood shavings as bedding material composted with shredded pine bark. (Mathur et al. moisture content. The particle size below 5 cm is desirable. 2. gardeners and farmers alike often can easily identify likely "recipes" from materials on-site. II. 2000). and straw.6. corncobs. 1995). shredding and blending organic wastes can enhance the rate of decomposition during composting by providing a more favorable surface to volume ratio. PARTICLE SIZE / TEXTURE The particle size is an important factor. yard wastes. BULK DENSITY It should be low enough (less than 40 lb/ft3) to allow for good aeration. Almost any organic material can be composted. A rile-of-thumb is that the composting biomass must contain at least 30 % free air space (i. loss of porosity. thermophilic composting. and bulk density can be achieved with a variety of feedstock combinations. animal bedding and manures. Some suggestions include: I. However.7. Combinations of poultry litter with bedding material and additional carbon-rich bulking materials. total porosity).. INSULATION Material can be used if cold weather keeps compost temperatures down. Dense manures and sludge can be "lightened" by adding of bulking agents. and anaerobic conditions. A continuous supply of oxygen is required to ensure rapid aerobic. It also can help reduce odor emissions from a pile.8. III.8. 2. vegetable trimmings. (Flynn et al. So that grinding.Review of Literature
m3 airs per day per kg volatile solids during thermophilic stage or maintains oxygen level at 10 to 18 %. 2. Municipal biosolids composted with combinations of sawdust. Preferred insulation materials include finished (recycled) compost and/or bulking materials. including (1) broiler litter containing wood shavings as bedding material composted with peanut hulls.e.8. Therefore. The main objectives of C: N ratio. as the microorganisms need a large surface area for their attack. excessive grinding can lead to compaction.
(LeaMaster et al. 2.9. but if it has been recontaminated with fresh manure. and Fe were all significantly affected by the compost treatment. electrical conductivity. 1998). suggesting that the acid Oxisol is unfavorable for the growth of Chinese mustard. two pig manure composts (A and B). and selected chemical properties were determined after harvesting the plants. The growth of plants in the control treatment was significantly lower than that of the compost-treated and lime-treated plants. The results showed that different composts affected the growth and soil chemical properties significantly. Al. a lime-chemical fertilizer treatment and a control plot of conventional chemical fertilizer were used. Some composts could increase the growth of Chinese mustard. NO3-N. and other nutrients. composting proceeds as indigenous microorganisms start to utilize the organic materials for available carbon. Ca. The plants were harvested 37 days after transplanting and the growth and N composition of these plants were measured. The soil was also sampled. nitrogen. the temperature begins to increase from heat that is generated through microbial oxidations and respiratory functions. NH4-N. cattle manure compost. COMPOST EFFECT ON SOIL PHYSICO-CHEMICAL PROPERTIES A pot experiment was conducted to assess the effect of different kinds of composts on the growth and nitrogen (N) composition of Chinese mustard (Brassica chinensis) in acid red soil. The pH. Mn. Finished compost is not a good substrate for growth of pathogens. As the activity continues. The lime-treated plants had higher concentrations of chlorophyll a and chlorophyll b than those of the compost-treated plants. Mg. Composting is completed when the pile no longer generates heat and the original organic materials are no longer recognizable. it may act as a carrier for pathogens. Pea residue compost. and 1N ammonium acetate exchangeable K.Review of Literature
all of these factors are optimal. The composting process has then reached an endpoint and is more or less biologically stable. There were no significant differences between treatments in the concentrations of chlorophyll a 19
and insoluble N concentrations in leaf blades and petioles of Chinese mustard varied significantly according to the compost applied. 2000).Review of Literature
and chlorophyll b. increase soil organic matter. moderate soil temperature. (Roe et al. The use of organic materials as mulches can slow the evaporation of water from the soil surface. Fertilizer applications were adjusted in order to make up the same level of N – P – K (180 – 100 – 160 kg / ha). stabilize soil pH. (Juang. serve as a source of slow release nutrients. and protect soil from erosion and structural breakdown by sun. given a significant yield response. the application of compost to vegetable has generally but not always. Compost application to commercial vegetable crops is relatively new. however. there was a close correlation between the total chlorophyll concentrations and the shoot yield of the plants. 1997). These experiments are still at an early stage. 1996). particularly in sandy soils. Compost may be utilized as an alternative weed controller. Gurung and Sherchan (1993) have stated that compost applied as a soil amendment can improve soil organic matter. although. The pig manure compost B could adequately supply nutrients especially N for plant growth and caused little NO3-N accumulation in plant tissues. (Peter et al. Research has demonstrated that compost can serve as a soil amendment to improve soil moisture and nutrient holding capacity. Also. (Chung et al. (Obreza and Reeder. Some experiments on the use of organic. reduce the germination of weed seeds and subsequent weed growth. organic compounds and chemical fertilizers for green onion have been carried out in Taiwan. 1993). soluble reduced N. 1997). 20
. Fertilizer is an essential part of any vegetable production system. and could be a source of micro and macronutrients. the water and nutrient retention in soils susceptible to leaching. The NO3-N. and to increase soil tilth and fertility in vegetable crop production systems. and ultimately improve plant growth and yields. 1994 and Stoffella et al. However. in which the decomposition of organic matter is faster than in temperate climates. these benefits can be reduced in hot humid climates. but so far they have shown yields from plots with organic compounds fertilizer to be higher than those with chemical fertilizer.
Hence. Thus. (Higa. 1993 and Velthof et al. Same results have been achieved in Asia. Van Lune et al. waste compost. the main reason for manure to raise the soil pH is due to the lime like materials such as Ca and Mg in the manure. sewage sludge) favors the accumulation of soil organic matter. while studying the effect of organic materials and animal manures on soil microorganisms. However.Review of Literature
wind. probably due to unfavorable conditions such as high or low temperature. organic manure and mulches increased the soil pH. (Zhang. Solid organic materials produced more diversification than liquid ones. 1992. Also. 1994 and Parr et al. the type of organic material applied influence annual accumulation rates in the first years after reclamation. they found that weed seed germination declines as the depth of the covering layer increases. improves soil structure and encourages the development of a vigorous population of soil microorganisms. One study found that application of livestock manure and other organic materials resulted in more diverse root fungal flora. microorganisms are useful in eliminating problems associated with the use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides. Also. Anonymous (1987) and (1992) confirmed that organic mulch improved the soil by increasing microbial activity in the soil and controlling soil temperature. It was reported that organic products are a major source of organic matter for agricultural soils. the regular input of organic matter (manure. the use of crop rotations. organic matter content. This is also important for 21
. O2. 1994). it seems to be less important for the long-term accumulation process than the application rate. they are now widely applied in nature farming and organic agriculture. That was in line with what Baskin and Baskin (1987) proved when they studied the effect of organic mulches on weed. and high CO2 levels. light. 1998). Delschen (1999) argued that after a long term field experiment carried out to study the impact of application of organic fertilizers on soil quality parameters that. 1998) and. It contains significant amounts of N and P. (Van Erp and Van Dijk. and rainfall. absence of sufficient moisture.
to document changes in soil fertility status and nutrient storage during the transition from conventional to organic farming practices. the application of similar amounts of organic C in the form of manure resulted in a higher accumulation of Soil Organic Matter (SOM) in nitrogen reduced farming system. Four farming systems differing in crop rotation and in the use of external inputs were established on land that had been previously managed conventionally. preventing erosion. both quantitatively and qualitatively. this in addition to improve overall farm production and fertility may assist the on-farm conservation of plant genetic resources. recycling of plant nutrients. The same level of productivity. The ratio in the materials chosen should ideally be 25 . Decomposition of plant residues and nutrient cycling are the most important soil processes related to soil fertility and stability. 1993). and green manuring. (Beyea et al. contribution to overall species and habitat diversity. humid sites. fodder and under-utilized plants. crop rotation is a widely used method of fertility maintenance and pest and disease control. it encourages a diversity of food crops. (FAO. 1999). nevertheless. An 8 years study was set up at the Sustainable Agriculture Farming System in USA by Clark et al. After 4 years of production. soils in the 22
. Factors that are important include the C : N ratio. 1993 and Roe et al. The most basic requirement for every type of composting method is the correct choice and preparation of the used compost materials. moreover. this may be higher at warm. is maintained by replacing cattle manure with compost. Fertility in the organic system depended upon animal manure applications and winter cover crops while the two conventional systems received synthetic fertilizers input. Scialabba (2000) wrote that crop rotation is a valuable tool for weed control.30 : 1. humidity and ventilation. (1998).Review of Literature
composted and uncomposted manure. In Organic farming. maintenance of soil structure and organic matter. Composting and application techniques of manure have to be optimized in order to guarantee a nutrient transfer to the plants with minimum losses and adapted to the requirement of plants.
soluble P. total N.Review of Literature
organic and low-input system had higher soil organic C. The removal of free organic acid slightly affected the soil pH. Burning the fallow and crop residue led to significant increases in soil pH. N. (Shen 23
. available P. organic matter. while in bare unfertilized plots the nutrients decreased below the pre treatment levels throughout the period of the experiment. the low-input system appeared to be the most efficient in storing excess N. NaHCO3-extracted P and exchangeable Ca were higher than those in the bulk soil. Electrical conductivity (EC) levels were relatively stable in the organic system thereby showing that the use of animals' manures has not resulted in increased salinity. pH. P. The build up of organic matter in the soil occurred slowly. and exchangeable bases. A residual effect of the compost on soil chemical properties was still present after 13 years of no application. Continuous application of compost for 28 years resulted in an increase in soil C. The increase in soil pH resulted from an increase in exchangeable bases through the application of compost. Another study was conducted by Adetunji (1997) to evaluate the effects of organic residues treatment on soil nutrients after clearing a 3-year secondary fallow land. especially in the rhizosphere soil. Another investigation focused on studying the application of different rates of compost to artificial field plots of a low humic Andosol in Japan for 15 or 28 years. soluble P. In fertilized one the increases due to residues incorporation were small but more sustainable. Differences in crop rotation also had a significant effect on the organic C levels due to the presence or absence of corn in the cropping sequence. In the rhizosphere soil. Whilst. and pH. discontinuation of manure application in the low-input system in the 4th year resulted in declining levels of organic C. exchangeable K within one month in both fertilized and unfertilized treatments. but this effect was weaker in comparison with that of the continuous application. and their effects on the chemical properties of wheat rhizosphere soil and non-rhizosphere soil measured. Differences in total N appeared to be related partially to inputs. and exchangeable K. exchangeable K.
15 tons/fed. composted sawdust (composted for 1. organic carbon decreased. Katia) seedling production. Results showed that FYM significantly affected the yield of wheat – corn crops. 2. On the contrary. they studied the impact of farmyard manure in comparison with chemical fertilizer and mixture of organo-mineral fertilizers on some crops on rotation (oats . 10. These results were in a close agreement with those obtained by Matsumura and Witjaksono (1999).10. vermiculite. but only in the soil surface layer (0–20 cm). Another field trial held to study the effect of composted crop residues (sesame straw. El-Emam (1999) conducted a trial aiming at spotting the light on the effect of some composted plant materials and organic manures on the macronutrients status in two textured soils. As proved by Ott et al. water hyacinth and peanut straw) at a different application rates (5. (1999) studied twenty-five combinations of peat.) on the soil chemical and physical properties as well as crop growth (corn) and production. NPK and Micronutrients significantly increased which reflected in decreasing C/N ratio as compared to the raw organic residues. These results indicate that sawdust can be used as a substitute for high percentages of peat in media for cucumber seedling production. (1983) Composted FYM led to the greatest increase in both soil organic matter and soil nitrate content in the top 30 to 40 cm. THE EFFECT OF COMPOST ON ORGANIC CROPS Sawan et al.Review of Literature
et al. Results obtained showed that the best plant growth and the highest yield were obtained by mixing the control medium with sawdust and plant residues compost 2:2:1 (v/v/v). and soil pH. 24
. (Taha.soybean and wheat – corn). 1996). Amounts of soil organic matter changed in accordance with the amount of crop residues reincorporated. 2000). especially in the surface layer. Results obtained indicated the significant increment of total N and available P in the soil accordingly on the order of biogas manure sludge < composted broad bean straw < composted zea maize stalks < FYM. total nitrogen and microbial biomass nitrogen. 2. 3 or 4 months) and crop residues compost as growing media for cucumber (cv.
T5. 100% soil-test-based NPK + ZnSO4 (50 kg/ha) + borax (10 kg/ha). T4 recorded the highest fruit yield of 1487.0 g/pot compared with 447. Also. T4. and T6. the following treatments were assessed: T1. Another field experiment was conducted to study the effect of organic manure and inorganic fertilizers on growth. 15 t/ha compost and 60:30:30 kg/ha. 75% soil-testbased NPK + ZnSO4 (50 kg/ha) + borax (10 kg/ha) + composted coir pith (5 t/ha). poultry manure at 57 q/ha and FYM at 143 q/ha and 72 q/ha. T2 + Tankslit [no details given] (40 t/ha). The response of rice to potassium has also been observed. using a soil neutral in reaction with a low salt concentration and poor organic carbon. Agrifound Dark Red. 1999). yield and quality contributing characters such as bulb color. P and K treatments. In a pot study with tomato cv. T2 + composted coir pith (5 t/ha). N. 15 t/ha compost supplemented with 30 kg/ha nitrogen top dressing and 15 t/ha compost plus 60 : 30 : 30 kg/ha N. control. on crop yields were studied in a field experiment under a rice-wheat cropping pattern in Nepal. or in different combinations.0 q/ha along with ammonium sulfate at 565 kg/ha were effective in increasing the growth. compactness. T3. TSS and dry matter and gave the highest net return. yield and quality of kharif onion cv.8 m.Review of Literature
Gurung and Sherchan (1993) studied the effects of long-term applications of compost and chemical fertilizers alone. Paiyur 1. grain yield of wheat was greatest from an application of 15 t/ha compost plus 60 : 30 : 0 kg/ha N. 75% soil-test-based NPK + ZnSO4 (50 kg/ha) + borax (10 kg/ha) + Tankslit (40 t/ha). T2.5 25
. P and K which was significantly higher than the control. In the fourth year. (Gupta et al. CAN 444 kg/ha and ammonium sulfate at 565 kg/ha. P and K were significantly higher than with chemical fertilizers only and the control treatments. The studies revealed that FYM at 72. The organic manures evaluated were sunflower cake at 19 q/ha. The control plot was maintained without any organic/inorganic fertilizer. The inorganic fertilizers evaluated were urea at 252 kg/ha. The bed size was 3. The grain yields of rice produced from 15 t/ha compost alone. In the fourth year the residual effect of the compost treatments applied to wheat was observed on the succeeding rice crop.6 x 1.
and a control (no fertilizer or manure applied). P and K content in soil and leaf. fish scraps. The OP IV + 75% NPK treatment resulted in the highest grain and straw yields.Review of Literature
g/pot in the control. A field experiment was conducted to study the effect of organic and inorganic manures on adult coconut palm. bone meal and neem cake. (Balasubramaniam et al. The dry matter production. composted coir pith (CCP) at 50 kg per palm per year. 50 % CCP (25 kg) + 50% of recommended dose of chemical fertilizers. and the residual soil fertility were favorably influenced by this treatment. The results revealed that application of 50 kg FYM. goat droppings. The treatments comprised of control. fish scraps and bone meal. fish scraps and neem cake. 2 kg neem cake + 0. and OP IV consisted of cow dung.3 kg urea + 2 kg single superphosphate + 2 kg muriate of potash per palm per year). K. 2001). poultry manure. poultry manure. (1999) showed that farmyard manure (FYM) and compost from chicken deep layer manure and bark were compared to mineral fertilization (NPK) and to non-fertilized control plots. 2000). while OP + 50% NPK treatment did not. with 47% higher nut yield compared to the control. recorded the highest N. OP III consisted of cow dung. OP II consisted of goat droppings. 1998). farmyard manure (FYM) + recommended dose of chemical fertilizers. P. 100 % NPK. Treatments with OP I-IV + 50 or 75% NPK at 1 t/ha resulted in higher grain and straw yields than treatments with 100% NPK and the control. Another investigation by Jak et al. and the highest mineral uptake. OP I consisted of poultry manure. (Bhoite et al. The amount of added fertilizer was adjusted to a total N supply of 200 kg/ha for cabbage 26
.5 kg bone meal + 4 kg ash per palm per year. Ca and Mg). Rice plants grown in a field experiment were treated with: organic products (OP) I-IV combined with 75 or 50 % NPK. along with the recommended dose of NPK. content and uptake of nutrients. OP + 75% NPK increased the absorption of the major nutrients (N. (Marimuthu et al. bone meal and neem cake. 100% of recommended dose of chemical fertilizers (1.
A field experiment was conducted by Bhardwaj et al.3% recommended NPK + 33.5. /ha).3% farmyard manure (6.m.3% farmyard manure (6.48 ton/ha) in cauliflower recorded higher yield which were statistically at par with recommended doses of chemical fertilizers. The results suggested that 27
. cabbage and cauliflower and its economic feasibility. Results showed that the highest yield (8500 kg dry matter/ha) was obtained with mineral fertilization where N was supplied twice (before transplanting and during head formation). followed by chicken manure.3% rapeseed cake (0.72 ton/ha) in tomato. 50% recommended NPK + 50% neem cake (0. lettuce (cv.48 ton/ha) in cabbage. However.5 and 6. Mn. /ha) and.Review of Literature
production and 100 kg/ha for the following spinach production. Application of sole organic sources of nutrients recorded 11 . (2000) during 199598 at Jachh to find out the effect of organic sources of nutrients. pigeon manure or buffalo manure. K. for 2 seasons. Net returns in organic produce of different vegetables were higher as the produce received higher price in the market. Yield was highest in the control treatment. /ha). P.m. okra.66 tons/ha) + 33. Ca.17% lower yield in different vegetable crops. the control (3700 kg d. application of 50% recommended NPK + 50% rapeseed cake (0. Head fresh and dry weights. Mineral composition of plants was influenced by treatment.3% recommended NPK + 33. Zn. El-Shinawy et al. (1999) conducted a field trial.8-2 mmhos/cm while pH ranged between 5. chicken manure. compost (4200 kg d.72 ton/ha) in okra. followed by mineral fertilization in which the whole amount of N was added at transplanting time (7900 kg d. then the treatment fertilized with FYM (6000 kg d. /ha).3% neem cake (0.66 tons/ha) + 33. neem cake and rapeseed cake as partial or complete alternative to chemical fertilizers on yield of tomato.m. Calona) plants grown under nutrient film technique (NFT) conditions were supplied with inorganic fertilizer (control).m. chlorophyll content and mineral composition (total NO3-N. Fe and Cu) were determined. 33. i. pigeon manure and finally buffalo manure. 33. The electrical conductivity of the nutrient solution was maintained at 1. finally. FYM.e.
with some modifications.Review of Literature
. could be used as an organic source under the nutrient film technique system.