Why Plants May Grow Like Crazy After a Dry Then Wet Event

Microbes and soil respiration.

CO2Burst.png

In field trials shown below in the video, CO2 respiration also shows a correlated rise in nitrogen removal and yield by plants.

Does that mean you are better off cycling between dry and wet conditions compared to a consistent moisture level for mineralisation? Probably not as indicated in the cumulative mineralization rate in the diagram above. My own gardening experiment with a wicking tray vs periodic watering system seems to bare similar results to those shown.

Temperature is also mentioned, with CO2 respiration at least doubling with every 10 degrees Celsius. That has me thinking about soil carbon priming vs CO2 respiration and how much and what type of mulch would best keep the soil microbes happy and in goldilocks temperature zone respiring CO2 while sequestering carbon.

Woods End Laboratory

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