Synthesis of enriched biochar as a vehicle for phosphorus in tropical soils

ABSTRACT Phosphorus (P) is one of the nutrients that most limits agricultural productivity, especially in tropical soils. Enriched biochar has been proposed to increase the bioavailability of P and other nutrients in the soil. Thus, the objective of this study was to evaluate the availability of P in phosphate biochar (composed of biomass and soil) as a function of the triple superphosphate mixture before and after the pyrolysis process. We produced eight types of enriched biochar via pyrolysis by combining sandy or clayey soil with rice or coffee husk, and by adding triple superphosphate before or after pyrolysis. The heating of the phosphate fertilizer during the pyrolysis process resulted in a higher crystallinity of the phosphates, lower content of labile fractions of P and lower content of available P in phosphate biochars than when the superphosphate was added after pyrolysis.