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In situ ion exchange resin membrane (IEM) technique to measure soil mineral nitrogen dynamics in grazed pastures

Research paper by Saman Bowatte, Russell Tillman, Andrew Carran, Allan Gillingham, David Scotter

Indexed on: 13 Dec '07Published on: 13 Dec '07Published in: Biology and Fertility of Soils



Abstract

This paper explored the potential of application of in situ ion exchange resin membrane (IEM) technique for assessing soil nitrogen (N) availability and spatial distribution in New Zealand grazed pastures. Field and incubation experiments conducted to test the technique proved IEM technique to be a useful approach to monitoring the continuous changes in soil mineral N in pasture soils. The field testing showed that the IEM technique reflects both differences in pool size and mineral N flux, while 2-M KCl extraction reflects only pool size at the sampling. Testing the effects of residence time, temperature, soil inorganic N content, and soil water content through diffusion modeling offers further support for using IEM to explore the complex dynamics of nitrogen availability in pasture soils.