Investigation the Effects of Date Palm Leaves and It’s Biochar on Yield and Water Use Efficiency of Forage Corn

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Msc. Soil Science Department, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Shahrekord, Iran.

2 Assistant Professor of Soil Science and Engineeringm, Faculty of Agriculture, Shahrkord University

3 PhD Candidate in Soil Resource Management, Department of Soil Science and Engineering, Faculty of Agriculture, Shahrekord University, Iran


Biochar plays an important role in the optimal use of water in agriculture and improving plant yield and water use efficiency. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate the effects of palm leaf and it’s biochar on yield, yield components and water use efficiency of forage corn in a sandy clay loam soil under the same conditions. Experiment with a completely randomized design with two types of modifiers of palm leaf and it’s biochar at six levels (control, 0.5, 1, 2, 3 and 4.5% by weight of date leaf treatments C0, D1, D2, D3, D4, D5, respectively and treatments C0, B1, B2, B3, B4, B5) were performed in three replications as a greenhouse experiment. Characteristics of height, stem diameter, wet and dry weight of shoots, root weight and volume were measured. Water use efficiency base on dry matter yield were calculated. The results showed that the effects of date palm leaves and biochar on the yield and its components, water use efficiency based on the dry matter yield of shoots and roots are significant at the level of 1%. The most effect of biochar and date palm leaf dry matter on shoot dry matter yield has observed in B5, wet plant yield in D2, root dry matter in D1, root volume and stem diameter in B5 and maximum plant height in B1 and B2. Also, the highest water use efficiency of plant is related to B5, which has increased the water use efficiency by 3.6% as compared to the control. It was while D1 improved root water use efficiency. The results showed that use of 4.5% by weight of biochar improved the yield and water use efficiency of the shoot and biochar can be used by increasing the amount of yield and water use efficiency in forage corn by considering its optimal amount.


Abbasalian, H., Soiltani, J. Bahrami Samani, A. Hashemi Garmdareh, S. E. Borzouei, A. and Ahmadvand, M. (2021). The effect of biochar and Wheat Straw on irrigation water productivity in barley. Journal of Water and Irrigation Management, in press. (In Farsi)
Akhtar, S. S., Li, G. T. Andersen, M. N. and Liu, F. L. (2014). Biochar enhances yield and quality of tomato under reduced irrigation. Agricultural Water Management, 138, 37–44.
Atkinson, C. J., Fitzgerald, J. D. and Hipps, N. A. (2010). Potential mechanisms for achieving agricultural benefits from biochar application to temperate soils: A review. Plant and Soil, 337, 1–18.
Bagheri, S., Hassandokht, M.  and Mirsoleimani, A. (2021). Effect of palm leaf biochar application on some physiological and biochemical characteristics of melon plants (Cucumis melo cv. Samsouri) under drought stress. Journal of Plant Process and Function, 10(45). (In Farsi)
Baiamonte, G., Minacapilli, M. and Crescimanno, G. (2020). Effects of biochar on irrigation management and water use effciency for three different crops in a desert sandy soil. Sustainability, 12, 7678.
Baronti, S., Vaccari, F. P. Miglietta, F. Calzolari, C. Lugato, E. Orlandini, S. Pini, R. Zulian, C. and Genesio, L. (2014). Impact of biochar application on plant water relations in Vitis vinifera (L). European Journal of Agronomy, 53, 38–44.
Case, S. D., Whitaker, J. McNamara, N. P. and Reay, D. S. (2012). The effect of biochar addition on N2O and CO2 emissions from a sandy loam soil. The role of soil aeration. Soil Biology and Biochemistry, 51, 125–134.
Chen, X., Chen, G. Chen, L. Chen, Y. Lehmann, J. McBride, M. B. and Hay, A. G. (2011). Adsorption of copper and zinc by biochars produced from pyrolysis of hardwood and corn straw in aqueous solution. Bioresource Technology, 102 (19), 8877–8884.
Dane, J. H. and Hopmans, J. W. (2002). Water retention and storage. In: Dane J.H. Topp G.C (eds): Methods of Soil Analysis. Part 4: Physical Methods. Madison Soil Science Societ of America.
Dewis, J. and Freitas, F. (1984). Physical and chemical methods of soil and water analysis. FAO soil bulletin 10, Oxford and 1BH publishing co. PVT. LTD. New Dehli Bombay Calcutta.
Downie, A., Crosky, A. and Munroe, P. (2009). Physical properties of biochar. In: Lehmann J. Joseph S. (Eds.) Biochar for Environmental Management: Science and Technology. Earthscan. London.
Esvand Rajabi, F., Karimi, A. Motaghian, H. R. and Mohammadi, Jahangard. (2020). Comparison of biochar effects of cow manure and sugarcane residues on moisture content of sandy loam soil. Iranian Water Researches Journal, 14(3), 171-178. (In Farsi)
Farhangi-Abriz, S., Torabian, S. Qin, R. Noulas, C. Lu, Y. and Gao, S. (2021). Biochar effects on yield of cereal and legume crops using meta-analysis. Science of The Total Environment, 775,145869.
Fisher, B., Manzoni, S. Morillas, L. Garcia, M. Johnson, M. S. and Lyon, S. W. (2019). Can biochar improve agricultural water use efficiency?. Geophysical Research Abstracts, 21, 7358.
Gao, Y., Shao G. Lu, J. Zhang, K. Wu, S. and Wang, Z. (2020). Effects of biochar application on crop water use efficiency depend on experimental conditions: A meta-analysis. Field Crops Research, 249, 107763.‏
Gaskin, J. W., Speir, R. A. Harris, K. Das, K. C. Lee, R. D. Morris, L. A. and Fisher, D. S. (2010). Effect of peanut hull and pine chip biochar on soil nutrients. corn nutrient status. and yield. Journal of Agronomy, 102, 623-633.
Gee, G. W. and Bauder, J. W. (1986). Particle size analysis hydrometer methods. In: D.L.
Sparks et al., (Eds). Method of Soil Analysis. part 1. pp: 383-411. American Society of
Agronomy and Soil Science Society of America. Madison. WI. USA.
Gunes, A., Inal, A. Taskin, M. B. Sahin, O. Kaya, E. C. and Atakol, A. (2014). Effect of phosphorus-enriched biochar and poultry manure on growth and mineral composition of lettuce (Lactuca sativa L. cv) grown in alkaline soil. Soil Use Manage, 30, 182–188.
Inal, A. A., Gunes, O. Sahin, M. B. and Kaya, E. C. (2015). Impacts of biochar and processed poultry manure applied to a calcareous soil, on the growth of bean and maize. Soil Use Manage, 31, 106–113.
Jeffery, S., Verheijen, F. G. A. Van Der Velde, M. and Bastos, A.C. (2011). A quantitative review of the effects of biochar application to soils on crop productivity using meta-analysis. Agriculture. Ecosystem and Environment, 144, 175–187.
Joseph, S., Cowie, A. L. Van Zwieten, L. Bolan, N. Budai, A. Buss, W., Luz Cayuela, M., Graber, E. R. Ippolito, J. A. Kuzyakov, Y. Luo, Y. Sik Ok, Y. Palansooriya, K. N. Shepherd, J. Stephens, S. Weng, Z. and Lehmann, J. (2021). How biochar works, and when it doesn’t: A review of mechanisms controlling soil and plant responses to biochar. GCB Bioenergy.
Khadem, A., Raesi, F. and Besharati, H. (2017). A Review of biochar effects on soil physical, chemical, and biological properties. Journal of Land Management, 5(1), 13-30. (In Farsi)
Laird, D. A. (2008). The charcoal vision: a win–win–win scenario for simultaneously producing bioenergy, permanently sequestering carbon, while improving soil and water quality. Agronomy Journal, 100(1), 178-181.
Liu X. H., and Zhang, X. C. (2012). Effect of biochar on ph of alkaline soils in the loess plateau: results from incubation experiments. International Journal of Agriculture and Biology, 14, 745–750.
Lusiba, S., Odhiambo, J. and Ogola, J. (2017). Effect of biochar and phosphorus fertilizer application on soil fertility: soil physical and chemical properties. Archives of Agronomy and Soil Science, 63(4), 477-490.‏
Major J., Rondon, M. Molina, D. Riha, S. J. and Lehmann, J. (2010). Maize yield and nutrition during 4 years after biochar application to a Colombian savanna oxisol. Plant and Soil, 333, 117–128.
Mirzashahi, K., and Bazargan, K. (2015). Soil organic matter management. Technical Journal, No. 535. (In Farsi)
Mukherjee, A. and Lal, R. (2013). Biochar impacts on soil physical properties and greenhouse gas emissions. Agronomy, 3, 313–339.
Nasimi, P., Karimi, A. and Gerami, Z. (2020). Long-term effects of palm leaf biochar on the porosity and structure stability of a sandy clay loam soil. Iranian Journal of Soil Research, 34(2):199-215. (In Farsi)
Nasimi, P., Karimi, A. and Motaghian, H. R. (2019). Effects of biochar produced from date palm’s leaves on saturated hydraulic conductivity and soil moisture coefficients of sandy clay loam soil. Iranian Water Researches Journal, 13(3), 161-171. (In Farsi)
Nelson, D. W. and Sommers, L. E. (1996). Total organic carbon and organic matter. In: D.L. Sparks et al., (Eds). Method of Soil Analysis. Part 3. 3rd Ed. pp. 961-1010. Chemical and Microbiological Properties. American Society of Agronomy and Soil Science Society of America Madison WI. USA.
Nowroozi, M., Tabatabaei, S. H. Nouri, M. R. and Motaghian, H. R. (2017). Short-term effects of biochar produced from date palm’s leaves on moisture retention in sandy loam soil. Journal of Water and Soil Resources Conservation, 6(2),137-150. (In Farsi)
Obia, A., Mulder, J. Martinsen, V. Cornelissen, G. and Børresen, T. (2016). In situ effects of biochar on aggregation, water retention and porosity in light-textured tropical soils. Soil and Tillage Research, 155, 35–44.
Osooli, H., Karimi, A. Shirani, H. and Tabatabaei, S. H. (2022). Effect of type, amount and biochar particles size on porosity, penetration resistance and stability of aggregates in a calcareous soil. Journal Water and Soil Resources Conservation, 11(1), 113-127. (In Farsi)
Ouyang. L., Wang, F. Tang, J. Yu, L. and Zhang, R. (2013). Effects of biochar amendment on soil aggregates and hydraulic properties. Journal of Soil Science and Plant Nutrition, 13 (4), 991-1002.
Pandey, D., Daverey, A. and Arunachalam, K. (2020). Biochar: production, properties and emerging role as a support for enzyme immobilization. Journal of Cleaner Production, 255 (In Press).
Ren, T., Wang, H. Yuan, Y. Feng, H. Wang, B. Kuang, G. Wei, Y. Gao, W. Shi, H. and Liu, G. (2021). Biochar increases tobacco yield by promoting root growth based on a three-year field application. Scientific Reports, 11, 21991.
Romdhane, L., Pawad, Y. M. Radhouane, L. Dal Cortivo, C. Barion, G. Panozzo, A. and Vamerali, T. (2019). Wood biochar produces different rates of root growth and transpiration in two maize hybrids (Zea mays L.) under drought stress. Archives of Agronomy and Soil Science, 65(6), 846-866.‏
Tanure, M. M. C., Costa, L. M. D. Huiz, H. A. Fernandes, R. B. A. Cecon, P. R. Junior, J. D. P. and Luz, J. M. R. D. (2019). Soil water retention, physiological characteristics, and growth of maize plants in response to biochar application to soil. Soil & Tillage Research, 192, 164–173.
Thomas, G. W. (1996). Soil pH and soil asidity. In. Sparks D.L. et al., (Eds). Method of Soil Analysis. Part 3. 3rd Eds. pp 475-490. American Society of Agronomy and Soil Science Society of America Madison WI. USA.
Uzoma, K. C., Inoue, M. Andry, H. Fujimaki, H. Zahoor, A. and Nishihara, E. (2011). Effect of cow manure biochar on maize productivity under sandy soil condition. Soil Use and Management, 27, 205-212.
Van Zwieten, L. V., Kimber, S. Morris, S. Chan, K.Y. Downie, A. Rust, J. Joseph, S. and Cowie, A. (2010). Effects of biochar from slow pyrolysis of papermill waste on agronomic performance and soil fertility. Plant Soil, 327, 235–246.
Wang, D., Fonte, S. J. Parikh, S. J. Six, J. and Scow, M. (2017). Biochar additions can enhance soil structure and the physical stabilization of C in aggregates. Geoderma, 303, 110–117.
Xiang, Y., Deng, Q. Duan, H. and Guo, Y. (2017). Effects of biochar application on root traits: a meta‐analysis. GCB bioenergy, 9(10), 1563-1572.‏
Zhang, H., Xiao, R. Jin, B. Shen, D. Chen, R. and Xiao, G. (2013). Catalytic fast pyrolysis of straw biomass in an internally interconnected fluidized bed to produce aromatics and olefins: effect of different catalysts. Bioresource Technology, 137, 82–8.
Zhang, Q., Song, Y. Wu, Z. Yan, X. Gunina, A. Kuzyakov, Y. and Xiong, Z. (2020). Effects of six-year biochar amendment on soil aggregation, crop growth, and nitrogen and phosphorus use efficiencies in a rice-wheat rotation. Journal of Cleaner Production, 242, 118435.‏