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Increased soil enzymatic reactions and soil microbial biomass by application of Lignitic humic acid

Lubna Ayub Durrani, Khalid Saifullah Khan, Asma Hassan

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Int. J. Biosci.16(1), 279-293, January 2020

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.12692/ijb/16.1.279-293


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A laboratory incubated study was conducted to evaluate the effects of lignitic humic acid addition on soil microbial activities and enzymatic reactions and indirectly improving the soil fertility level. Two types of soils (alkaline soils and sandy clay loam soils) were taken to apply lignitic humic acid at different rates (0, 2, 4, 6, 8µg g-1 soil). Treated and controlled soil samples were incubated at 25oC with moisture contents of 50% soil WHC for a period of 56 days. An increase in the cumulative CO2-C release, microbial biomass C, microbial biomass N, microbial biomass P and the activities of dehydrogenase and alkaline phosphatase enzymes in the soil was recorded by the addition of lignitic humic acid as compare to control. The decrease in ratios of C/N and C/P in the microbial biomass was observed, while the ratios of dehydrogenase/microbial biomass C, and alkaline phosphatase/microbial biomass C increased significantly. Addition of 8µg g-1 soil humic acid was the optimum humic acid application rate for its effect on soil microbial parameters in both soil types. All the microbial biomass indices exhibited similar temporal pattern being highest on 14th day of incubation followed by a gradual decline during rest of the incubation period. It was concluded that application of humic acid at an appropriate level (8µg g-1 soil) positively impacted soil ecology and soil fertility by improving microbial activities and enzymatic reactions in soil.


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Increased soil enzymatic reactions and soil microbial biomass by application of Lignitic humic acid

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