Integrated Nutrient Management: It is defined as the management of soil fertility and supply of nutrient of plant to an optimum level for sustaining the desired crop production through optimisation of benefit from all the resources of plant nutrient in an integrated manner.
This integrated nutrient management is very old concept. It is not new but it is an old practice. When all the nutrients of plant need were met through organic sources to pass the secondary micronutrients besides the primary nutrient.
Integrated Nutrient Management
It play a very important role in agriculture because it manage the soil fertility and supply nutrient to the plant though which the crops and plants can grow properly.
But today’s the concept of integrated nutrient management has been become great significance because of two reasons and the are :-
1. The need of continued increase in productivity and production requires growing application of plant nutrients.
2. The current level of fertilizer production is not enough in India to meet the plant nutrient requirement.
Simply we can say that integrated nutrient management is the combined application of chemical fertilizers along with organic resources like manures, biofertilizers and other organic matter for crop production.
Integrated nutrient management has been considered as an integral part of Sustainable agricultural system.
Concept of Integrated Nutrient Management
The main concept of integrated nutrient management is to regulate the nutrients supply for the optimum crop growth and productivity.
It also improve and maintain the soil fertility. Zero adverse impact on Agro-Industries which is also a concept behind the integrated nutrient management.
Advantages of Integrated Nutrient Management
1. It increase the availability of nutrient in the soil.
2. It synchronize the nutrient demands.
3. It provide the balanced nutrition to the crops in the field.
4. It reduce the deterioration of soil, water and Ecosystem.
5. It improve the physical, chemical and biological function of soil.
6. It reduce the nutrient losses to the field surface, water bodies and atmosphere.
7. It also reduce the antagonist effect resulting from hidden deficiency and nutrient imbalance.
Components of Integrated Nutrient Management
The main components of integrated nutrient management are fertilizer, organic manure, legumes, crop residues and biofertilizer.
Fertilizer is the most important component of integrated nutrient management. The importance and dependence of fertilizer has been increasing day by day because of the need to supply large amount of nutrients in intensive cropping with high production.
The NPK uses the ratio, is common in fertilizer but the application of potassium, sulphur and other micronutrient is often ignored.
Local fertilizer production is inadequate to fulfill the requirement and the situation is not to improve in the coming days. The utilization of fertilizers nutrients very from 30 to 50% by the crops in case of Nitrogen, 15 to 20% in case of phosphorus and 5% in case of micronutrients.
Increase the use of nutrients efficiency should, therefore be a prioritized area of research for restoration and improvement of soil fertility and minimizing the cost production of crops.
2. Organic Manure
Organic manures like compost FYM (farm yard manure), crop residues, human wastes, animal waste, Citty refuse, rural compost, sewage and other agricultural wastes have the large nutrient potential.
FYM and compost have been using from very long time. It maintain the soil fertility and improve the yield stability.
There are also other potential organic sources of nutrients such as oil cake, waste of foods etc. There are several Industries by-products and Municipal waste with fare nutrient potential. There is need to integrate this manure sources depending on their availability in different-different crops and cropping system.
The industrial by-products like spent-wash from molasses, pressmud etc. from sugar industries and waste of other food processing industries have good nutrient value. Sulphitation pressmud (SPM) has been great potential to apply nutrient to favourable effect on soil properties.
In the last 3 decades SPM has been great importance as a nutrient supplement in sugarcaneratoon-wheat and other intensive cropping system of sugarcane.
Other than that, the municipal solid waste and sewage sludge are the important nutrients sources which is available for the integration with fertilizer inputs. This type of nutrients are bulky and content low nutrient. Hence it have lost their relative importance over time to time in the crop production.
Legumes increase the fertility of soil. It maintain the soil health. It has a long standing history of being soil health restorer and it is due to their availability to obtain nitrogen from the Earth atmosphere in symbiosis with rhizobia. When grown for grain or folder in the cropping, legumes could prove important component of integrated nutrient management.
It is grown as green manure, forage or grain crop improved the productivity of wheat, rice cropping system and also maintain the soil fertility for the long time.
4. Crop Residues
Crop residues have many uses in the agriculture but it may not be always available as an component of integrated nutrient management. In the region like North-east India where mechanical harvesting is done, a large quantity of crop residue is left on the field and that residues can form a part of nutrients supply in the agriculture field.
Large amount of Crop Residue is like potatoes, sugarcane and other vegetable available with us which can be a nutrient for the crop production.
If we recycle this reduce back to field, it surely help to build organic matter in the soil and it also sustain crop yield level. Crop residues left in the field even in tradditional harvesting method, range from 0.5 to 1.5 ton per hectare but when mechanical harvesting is done, the amount of crop residues is much greater.
Biofertilizer is also an important component of integrated nutrient management. It is the material containing living or Latin cell of the agricultural beneficial microorganisms.
This biofertilizer play an important role in the improving the soil fertility and increase the crop productivity due to biofertilizer is capable to fix atmospheric Nitrogen, solubilize Phosphorus and it decompose the farm Waste resulting in release of plant nutrient.
Rhizobium, Azosphirillium, Azotobacter etc. are the biofertilizer which have the ability to fix atmospheric Nitrogen which increased the nitrogen supply to the crops.
Similarly Pseudomonas and Bacillus species help to convert insoluble phosphorus into plant is usable form and it then improve the phosphate availability to the crops in the field. Fungi like Vehicular Arbuscular Mycorrhizae (VAM) increase the nutrient uptake particularly that of phosphorus due to increase the contact of roots with the heavy soil volume.
Rhizobium is the common name in bio fertilizer which acts as the primary symbiotic fixer of Nitrogen.