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Control Over Fundamental Soil N Cycling Process in Minnesota Cropping Systems: Nitrification, Nitrosation

Study author(s): Michael Sadowsky, University of Minnesota, Department of Soil, Water, and Climate
Years of study: 2014, 2015
Location(s): St Paul MN, Rosemount MN, Becker MN, Waseca MN and Cedar Creek MN

Important: for the complete report, including all tables and figures, please download using the links to the right.


The nitrification process consists of two distinct steps. The first step transforms ammonium to nitrate and is catalized by ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AMOaB) and archaea (AMOaA); the second step transforms nitrite into nitrate is carried out by nitrite-oxidizing bacteria (NOB). Nitrite and nitrate are very mobile forms of nitrogen and are often lost through soil leaching. Therefore, these two different groups of micro-organisms and their interactions will determine the fate of nitrogen soil movement and possible plant acquisition. In Minnesota soil, very little is known about this nitrification process and how soil types, soil farming history, and soil fertilizer management influence these microbe communities and the N cycling.

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