Publication Details

Category Text Publication
Reference Category Journals
DOI 10.1007/s11104-015-2645-8
Document Shareable Link
Title (Primary) Interaction between silicon cycling and straw decomposition in a silicon deficient rice production system
Author Marxen, A.; Klotzbücher, T.; Jahn, R.; Kaiser, K.; Nguyen, V.S.; Schmidt, A.; Schädler, M.; Vetterlein, D.
Source Titel Plant and Soil
Year 2016
Department BZF; BOPHY
Volume 398
Issue 1
Page From 153
Page To 163
Language englisch
Keywords Paddy soils; Phytolith dissolution; Rice straw decomposition; Rice straw recycling; Silicon fertilization; Vietnam
UFZ wide themes RU1

Background and aims

Rice plants (Oryza sativa L.) contain large quantities of silicon (Si) in form of phytoliths, which increase their resistance to abiotic and biotic stresses. The Si cycle through rice fields is hardly studied. We tested how increasing Si availability affects rice growth and the decomposability of the straw. Secondly we tested the role of straw recycling for Si availability.


In a field experiment, we applied three levels of silica gel during one rice cropping season. In a follow-up laboratory experiment, we used straw produced in the field experiment, having different Si concentrations, and studied straw decomposition, straw Si release, and Si uptake by plants.


Silicon fertilization increased Si contents, biomass production, and grain yield of rice plants. Increased Si uptake by rice decreased concentrations of C and some essential nutrients (N, P, K, Ca, and Mg) in the straw, and increased straw decomposability and Si release.


Fertilization with silica gel is an option to improve Si supply to rice plants growing on weathered soils with low levels of plant-available Si. Phytoliths from fresh rice straw dissolve fast in soil, thus, recycling of rice straw is an important source of plant-available Si.

Persistent UFZ Identifier
Marxen, A., Klotzbücher, T., Jahn, R., Kaiser, K., Nguyen, V.S., Schmidt, A., Schädler, M., Vetterlein, D. (2016):
Interaction between silicon cycling and straw decomposition in a silicon deficient rice production system
Plant Soil 398 (1), 153 - 163 10.1007/s11104-015-2645-8