Chemical investigations of Si-rich organic and inorganic amendments and correlation analysis between different chemical composition and Si contents in amendments

  • Muhammad Irfan Sohail
  • Muhammad Zia ur RehmanEmail author
  • Ghulam Murtaza
  • Muhammad Ashfaq Wahid
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Implications of Biochar Application to Soil Environment under Arid Conditions


Application of silicon (Si) in agriculture, especially in degraded soils, is a promising, sustainable, and agro-environment compatible strategy. However, dilemma is the poor availability of monosilicic acid (SA) in soil solution due to intensive polymerization. Commercial silicates have severe limitations due to low solubility, inaccessibility, and high prices. Thus, identification of cheaper, soluble, and sustainable Si sources is an exigent requisite for utter and cost-effective remediation. Presence of high quantities of soluble Si in Si hyperaccumulating plants and industrial by-products provides an enticing choice. Therefore, chemical characteristics of 28 amendments were explored. Investigated amendments were plant residues, ashes, biochars (BCs), and industrial by-products. Our findings declared that total Si contents (TSi) were higher in BCs (5.7–71.6%) > ashes (49.5–53.6%) > plant residues (13–5%) > biosolids (3.6–41%) > by-products (15.9–36.8%). The phyto-available Si (PASi) was also highest in BCs (0.82–34.7%) > ashes (23.5–28.7%) > plant residues (6.2–26.9%) > by-products (4.8–13.3%) > biosolids (1.8–12%). Overall, the water-soluble Si (WSi) ranged from 0.04 to 1.09%. The carbon (C) contents ranged from 14.2 to 67.4% among amendments. BCs also showed higher pH (7.0 to 12.7). Pearson correlation and path analysis indicated that strong relationship existed among chemical properties. Rice residue-based amendments showed promising characteristics with high contents of TSi, PASi, WSi, and other essential nutrients.


Silicon Biochar Solubility Biogenic silica Plant residues 



The financial support from the University of Agriculture, Faisalabad is gratefully acknowledged.

Supplementary material

12517_2018_4215_MOESM1_ESM.docx (65 kb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 65 kb)


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Copyright information

© Saudi Society for Geosciences 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Muhammad Irfan Sohail
    • 1
  • Muhammad Zia ur Rehman
    • 1
    Email author
  • Ghulam Murtaza
    • 1
  • Muhammad Ashfaq Wahid
    • 2
  1. 1.Institute of Soil and Environmental Sciences, Faculty of AgricultureUniversity of AgricultureFaisalabadPakistan
  2. 2.Department of Agronomy, Faculty of AgricultureUniversity of AgricultureFaisalabadPakistan

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