Cruz-Méndez, A.S.; Ortega-Ramírez, E.; Lucho-Constantino, C.A.; Arce-Cervantes, O.; Vázquez-Rodríguez, G.A.; Coronel-Olivares, C.; Beltrán-Hernández, R.I. Bamboo Biochar and a Nopal-Based Biofertilizer as Improvers of Alkaline Soils with Low Buffer Capacity. Appl. Sci. 2021, 11, 6502. https://doi.org/10.3390/app11146502
Alkaline soils with low buffering capacity are susceptible to amendments such as biochar or biofertilizers, which could drastically alter their pH. For that, this study aimed to evaluate the effectiveness of a low biochar and biofertilizer addition to improve soil characteristics and the use of nutrients to reduce the doses of chemical fertilizer. For that, we measured the initial effect of biochar addition on the soil characteristics. Then, to evaluate the changes produced by biochar and biofertilizer on cultivated soil, we carried out a greenhouse experiment with Physalis ixocarpa for two crop cycles. We also studied the nutrient use efficiency, comparing chemical fertilization at 100% (without biochar) against 50% and 20% with biochar on crop yield, plant height, fruit weight, and root length. Finally, we compared the combination of biochar and biofertilizer with the treatments mentioned earlier. The results showed that after adding 0.2% of bamboo biochar, bulk density (BD) decreased while CEC, as well as OM, Pav, Fe, and Cu contents, increased in the soil. The combination of biochar and biofertilizer improved WHC, Pav, and OM comparing to the soil added with biochar. We found that the bamboo biochar and nopal-based fertilizer are suitable improvers for the studied soil.