Characterization and dissolution properties of phytolith occluded phosphorus in rice straw

Trang K. Trinh, Thinh T.H. Nguyen, Tu N. Nguyen, Ta Yeong Wu, Andrew A. Meharg, Minh N. Nguyen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)
192 Downloads (Pure)


Silicon (Si) is assimilated from soil by rice and is deposited in shoots in inter- and intracellularly, resulting in the formation of silicaceous structures, namely phytoliths. During the precipitation of Si, elements present in xylem/phloem sap, including phosphorus (P), can also be occluded in the phytolith. We examined the release of Si and P from the rice straw derived phytolith to elaborate the desilification mechanism, and the potential effects of phytolith as a nutrient ammendment. Data from batch heating experiments revealed that P trapped in the phytolith structure could be released accompanying with the dissolution of the phytolith. The highest values of soluble Si and P were found in the range of 500–700 °C. The chemical composition, X-ray diffraction, infrared spectra and specific surface area (SSA) data suggested that the presence of occluded organic carbon at <500 °C and crystallization of silica at >700 °C were the main reasons for lower dissolution rates of phytolith and decreasing P release. With respect to practices of burning rice straw, it can be recommended that treatment temperature needs to be taken into account to maximize P release for crops.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-24
Number of pages6
JournalSoil and Tillage Research
Early online date26 Apr 2017
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2017


  • Phosphorus
  • Phytolith
  • Rice straw

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Soil Science
  • Earth-Surface Processes

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