Rice production in Arkansas is one of the top three crop commodities in terms of cash receipts. Researchers and farmers report that nitrogen (N) needs to be managed according to a variety of factors with two important ones being soil and fertilizer type. The objectives of this experiment were to determine: 1) the degree to which floodwater-incorporated N applied as urea or as ammonium sulfate infiltrates intact cores (7.2-cm dia., 10-cm depth) containing DeWitt siltloam soil, and 2) the distribution of N during 12 h of ponding. Inorganic-N concentrations were analyzed at 2-cm depth intervals in cores following removal of the flood. Nitrogen from applied fertilizer was recovered as ammonium. Ammonium sulfate-N remained in the top 4 cm of soil with concentrations of 375 µg N g-1 in the surface 2 cm and 300 µg N g-1 at the 2 - 4 cm depth after 12 hr of ponding. At all depth intervals below 4 cm, ammonium sulfate-N remained below 30 µg N g-1. In contrast, after 12 h of ponding, N in soil receiving urea was 105 µg N g-1 in the top 2 cm and 173 µg N g-1 at 2-4 cm. At 4-6, 6-8, and 8-10 cm, N was 109, 108, and 35 µg N g-1, respectively, after 12 h of ponding. These results demonstrate immediate and deeper movement of ammonium into silt loam soil receiving urea as compared to ammonium sulfate, demonstrating how the form of N in fertilizer affects its movement into the soil profile.
Copenhaver, Lindsay M.; Savin, Mary C.; Miller, David M.; Tomlinson, Peter J.; Brye, Kristofor R.; and Norman, Richard J.
"Infiltration and short-term movement of nitrogen in a silt-loam soil typical of rice cultivation in Arkansas,"
Discovery, The Student Journal of Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences. University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture. 7:14-18.
Available at: http://scholarworks.uark.edu/discoverymag/vol7/iss1/6