Soil Carbon Mineralization via Lab Incubations — Living Field Lab (LFL) Study

Data in the KBS LTER core database may not be published without written permission of the lead investigator or project director Full terms of use

Measurement of carbon dioxide produced in lab incubations of soils by depth from plots of the Living Field Lab Experiment.

This datatable is part of the Living Field Laboratory dataset.

The Living Field Laboratory is a long-term rotation study established in 1993 under the direction of Emeritus Professor Dr. Richard Harwood to evaluate the benefits of cover crops (as green manure) and/or the addition of composted dairy manure in two integrated systems compared to a conventional and an organic system. The LFL accommodates every entry point of the crop rotation each year and has a factorial design that allows for the comparison of a number of interactions. These interactions include: differences in N management, rotation effects, and cover crops. From 1993 through 2005, the rotation consisted of corn (Zea mays L.)/corn/soybean (Glycine max)/wheat (Triticum aestivum) vs. continuous corn. During this period, crimson clover (Trifolium incarnatum L.) was seeded to 1st yr. corn, 2nd yr corn was in rye grass (Lolium multiflorum), soybean had no cover, and red clover (Trifolium pretense L.) was frost-seeded into wheat.

In 2006, under the direction of Dr. Sieglinde Snapp and through consultation with a farmer advisory group, the rotation was shortened to a 3 yr rotation of corn/soybean/wheat vs. continuous corn. The remaining plot in each management system was converted to a 2 yr rotation of corn/soybean. Cereal rye (Secale cereale) is now planted after corn regardless of crop rotation. Cereal rye follows soybean in the 2-yr rotation. Red clover is frost-seeded into wheat.

The management systems are: Conventional, Integrated Fertilizer and Integrated Compost. Weed management is identical across systems, and nitrogen fertilizer management adjusted to take into account soil N availability and balance nitrogen inputs across treatments. The cover crop is present as a split plot (plus minus) within each system. The split-plot cover crop treatment was established in 1993 in Integrated Fertilizer and in Integrated Compost, while the split-plot cover crop treatment was established 14 years later in 2007 in the Conventional treatment, to allow a comparison of short and long-term cover crop presence.

In 2007, the organic management system was changed to a comparison of a perennial grain systems (perennial wheat-alfalfa intercrop) and a 4-yr rotation of corn/soybean/wheat/ alfalfa (Medicago sativa). This allows the comparison of a typical Michigan field crop organic system to a novel system that involves a new, perennial system.


Experiment: Living Field Lab (LFL) Study
Data available from: January 1999 to January 2001
Dataset: KBS042
Datatable ID: KBS042-013.78
Core Areas Organic Matter,Disturbance
Repository link:
Related Tables:
Last Updated 2023-10-24
Variate Description Units
Year year in which the date occurs
Plot plot ID
Rep field replicate
Cover cover crop present or not
Mgmnt management type
Spring Crop crop planted in the spring
Depth depth of soil sample cm
Sample Date date soil was sampled
Day laboratory incubation day
Rate CO2 rate of CO2 evolved per day mg/day
Carbon CO2 CO2 evolved per gm of carbon mg/g
Soil CO2 CO2 evolved per gm of soil mg/g

Data Excerpt

year plot rep cover mgmnt spring_crop depth sample_date day rate_co2 carbon_co2 soil_co2
2001 112B 1 no cover organic wheat 0-10 2001-04-18 00:00:00 UTC 21
2001 113A 1 cover organic 2nd yr corn 0-10 2001-04-18 00:00:00 UTC 21
2001 113B 1 no cover organic 2nd yr corn 0-10 2001-04-18 00:00:00 UTC 21
2001 114A 1 cover organic soybean 0-10 2001-04-18 00:00:00 UTC 21
2001 114B 1 no cover organic soybean 0-10 2001-04-18 00:00:00 UTC 21
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