Document Type: Original Article


Wondo Genet Agricultural Research Center P.O. Box 198 Shashemene, Ethiopia



The impact and cost of synthetic fertilizers as well as their associated risks on the environmental safety was becoming unaffordable. To alleviate these problems, integrating this synthetic fertilizers with easily available and an environment friendly compound like bio-char is of very high significance towards meeting our goal of increasing agricultural production and ensuring food security. The present field experiment was therefore conducted to investigate the effect of biochar rate application on the selected properties of soils and yield and yield components of Lemon Grass (Cymbopogon citratuc L.) during 2013/2015 in W/Genet. Biochar produced from coffee husk and biogas was applied at rates of 0, 5, 10, 15 and 20 tone ha-1 for both coffee husk and biogas which was giving a total of nine treatments, where arranged in Randomized Complete Blocked Design with three replications. The over years result showed that the application of biochar have an increasing effects on soil properties like PH, OC, total N, available P, CEC and exchangeable cations and significant (p<0.05) increase in fresh biomass and number of leaf per hill. The highest fresh biomass, number of leaf per hill and moisture content was obtained by the application of 15ton/hectare biochar rate from coffee husk followed by the application of 15ton/hectare biochar rate from sugar factory and the highest essential oil yield was obtained by the application of 15ton/hectare biochar rate from sugar factory followed by the application of 15ton/hectare biochar rate from coffee husk. The best treatment recommended would be 15 tone ha-1 biochar from coffee husk and followed by 15 tone ha-1 biochar from biogas in order to achieve optimum Lemmon Grass production in W/Genet soil. Therefore, application biochar is very imperative to increase soil fertility, enhance nutrient uptake, ameliorate polluted soils and reduce the amount of carbon produced due to biomass burning.


Main Subjects

Abebe, N., Endalkachew, K., Mastawesha, M., Gebermedihin, 2012. Effect of biochar application on soil properties and nutrient uptake of Lettuces (Lactuca sativa) grown in chromium polluted soils American-Eurasian. J. Agr. Environ. Sci., 12(3), 369-376.
fani, M.S., 2010. Rice Husk biochar for rice based cropping system in acid soil: The characteristics of rice Husk biochar and its influence on the properties of acid sulfate soils and rice growth in West Kalimantan. Indonesia. J. Agr. Sci., 2(1), 39-47.
Carter, M.R., 1993. Soil sampling and methods of analysis Boca Raton: Lewis Publishers.
Chan, K.Y., Van Zwieten, L., Meszaros, I., Downie, A., Joseph, S., 2008. Using poultry litter biochars as soil amendments. Aust. J. Soil. Res., 46, 437-444.
Geleta, S., 1981. Uptake and Response of Durum Wheat (Triticum durum. Desf) to N and P Fertilization on Koticha and Gombore Soils of Ada Plains. M.Sc. Thesis, College of Agriculture, Alemaya., 98.
Glaser, B.L., Johannes’s, Wolfgang, 2002. Ameliorating physical and chemical properties of highly weathered soils in the tropics with charcoal-a review. Biol. Fertil. Soil., 35, 219-230.
Guenther, E., 1972. The essential oils: Histort-orogin in plants production-analysis (voll) Robert E. Kriger publishing Co. Malabar, Florida, 427.
Lehman, J., Da Silva Jr, J.P., Steiner, C., Nehls, T., Zech, W., Glaser, B., 2003. Nutrient availability and leaching in an archaeological Anthrosol and a Ferralsol of the Central Amazon basin: fertilizer, manure and charcoal
amendments. Plant. Soil., 249, 343-357.
Lehmann, C.J., Rondon, M., 2006. Bio-char soil management on highly-weathered soils in the tropics. In: N.T.
Uphoff, (Ed.), and Biological Approaches to Sustainable Soil Systems. CRC Press, Boca Raton, 517-530.
Lehmann, J., 2007. Bio-energy in the black. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, 5, 381-387.
Lehmann, Rodon, 2006; Lehmanne, 2007; Gaunt, Lehmann, 2008. Energy balance and emissions associated with biochar sequestration and pyrolysis bioenergy production. Environ. Sci. Technol., 42(11), 4152–4158.
Mahajan, A., Bhagat, R.M., Gupta, R.D., 2008. Integrated nutrient management in sustainable rice-wheat cropping system for food security in India. SAARC J. Agr., 6(2), 29-32.
Major, J., Rondon, M., Molina, D., Riha, S.J., Lehmann, J., 2010. Maize yield and nutrition during 4 years after biochar application to a Colombian savanna oxisol. Plant. Soil., 333, 117–128.
Malisa, M.N., Hamdan, J., Husni, M.H.A., 2011. Yield response of Kenaf (Hibiscus cannabinus L.) to different rates of charcoal and nitrogen fertilizer on Bris soils in Malaysia. Middle-East J. Sci. Res., 10(1), 54-59.
SAS inst, 2002. SAS (Statistical Analysis System) 1996. SAS/STAT. Guide Version 6.12. SAS, Institute Inc. Raleigh, North Carolina: USA.
Scheuner, E.T., Makeschin, F., Wells, E.D., Carter, P.Q., 2004. Short-term impacts of harvesting and burning disturbances on physical and chemical characteristics of forest soils in western Newfoundland, Canada. Eur. J.
Forest. Res., 123(4), 321-330.
Steiner, C., Glaser, B., Teixera, W.G., Lehmann, J., Blum, W.E.H., Zach, W., 2008. Nitrogen retention and plant uptake on a highly weathered central Amazonian Ferralsol amended with compost and charcoal. J. Plant.
Nutr. Soil. Sci., 171, 893-899. DOI: 10.1002/jpln.200625199.
Stephanie, T., Jean-Francois, P., Sylvain, B., 2005. Manioc peel and charcoal: a potential organic amendment for sustainable soil fertility in the tropics. Boil. Fertil. Soil., 41, 15-21.
Tashi Delek, 2008. Guide lines for resource assessment and management of Lemmon grass. Department of Forests, Ministry of Agriculture Royal Government of Bhutan.
Van Zwieten, L., Kimber, S., Morris, S., Chan, K.Y., Downie, A., Rust, J., Joseph, S., Cowie, A., 2010. Effect of biochar from slow pyrolysis of paper mill waste on agronomic performance and soil fertility. Plant. Soil., 327. 235-246.
Warnock, D.D., Lehmann, J., Kuyper, T.W., Rillig, M.C., 2007. Mycorrhizal responses to biochar in soil - concepts and mechanisms. Plant. Soil., 300(1-2), 9-20.