Effect of a Long-Term Compost Treatment on the Water Management of Sandy Soil
The large part of sandy soils in Hungary has unfavorable water management properties. Studies have shown that the sewage sludge compost, due to its high organic content, is suitable for improving structure and water management of these soils. The aim of our study was to determine the effects of the application of sewage sludge compost on physical properties of sandy soil. Materials and Methods: The experiment was established in 2003 at the Research Institute of Nyíregyháza of the University of
... ebrecen in Hungary to study the utilization of sewage sludge compost in agriculture. In this study, however, the changes of water retention and erodibility of soil were measured for three periods. The soil type of the experiment is Arenosol (Dystric Lamellic Arenosol). The applied compost contained sewage sludge of 40%, straw of 25%, bentonite of 5% and rhyolite of 30%. The compost is applied every 3 rd year in the following amounts: 0, 9, 18 and 27 Mg ha-1 of dry matter. Results: The compost treatment had a beneficial effect on soil structure thereby reducing the runoff and sediment loss under high intensity rainfall (130 mm h-1). However, in the control plot there was significantly higher water erosion. The water retention of soil was slightly increased after compost application. Conclusions: The compost application improved the water management properties of sandy soil, which is connected with organic matter addition into soil. The compost treatment had a beneficial effect on soil structure thereby reducing the runoff and sediment loss.