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ISRN Soil Science
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 310727, 7 pages
Research Article

Effect of Nitrogen Sources on Microbial Biomass Nitrogen under Different Soil Types

Central Laboratory for Agricultural Climate (CLAC), Agricultural Research Center (ARC), Dokki, Giza 12411, Egypt

Received 7 December 2011; Accepted 10 January 2012

Academic Editor: S. Yamulki

Copyright © 2012 Haytham M. El-Sharkawi. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Knowledge to increase the microbial biomass nitrogen (MBN) as a bulk of free-living microbes in paddy soil is limited. The potential benefit of these microorganisms was evaluated, in this study, under different nitrogen sources and two paddy soils. The results revealed that pots treated with organic matter recorded the maximum value of the total N uptake and MBN, followed by the Urea treated pots. Pots amended with sludge exhibited a higher microbial N forming ability than those amended with straw compost under both soils. But ammonium concentration in soil increased with straw compost application. Under fresh soil treatment, microbial N uptake rate and proportion of plant nitrogen derived from microbial nitrogen sources ( 𝑃 x ) were higher than autoclaved soil. A positive correlation was found between the 𝑃 x and the total N in rice shoot in both soils. Finally, we can say that MBN was governed not only by the soil nitrogen content but also by the type of the nitrogen source. The addition of sludge to fresh soil increased total MBN and consequently could be indirectly beneficial to rice production especially in poor soils. Thus, soil microbes contribute to plant growth by serving the available nitrogen during the season.