The widely used ecosystem model DailyDayCent (DDC) was used to predict soil organic carbon (SOC) sequestration and yield under different fertilization treatments on a wheat (Triticum aestivum) monoculture on Broadbalk field, Rothamsted, UK. Over a period of about 170 years, the management practices on the test site, which is separated into plots with different treatments of fertilizer and manure application, are well documented. Four treatments consisting of control (no fertilizer), mineral nitrogen (N) fertilizer (MN), farm yard manure (FYM) and a combination of both (FYMN) have been selected for the study. DDC simulated the greatest increases in SOC (three times higher compared to simulation of the control plot) in the FYM plot. Overall a good agreement between modelled and measured yield was obtained (except in control plots). As observed in the experimental plots, the highest yield predicted by the model is with FYMN plot (more than three times higher relative to the control plot). A sensitivity test for the MN and FYM plots demonstrated that predicted SOC was relatively insensitive (1%) to bulk density, pH and field capacity. Higher sensitivity (4–7%) of predicted SOC changes were observed by changes in external C input. An increase of temperature by 1 °C or precipitation by 10% decreased predicted SOC by 2–4% and vice versa, and simulated a 1–4% variability in yield. DDC is a useful tool for simulating SOC in the long term plots, with a good fit to data, and is useful for examining alternate hypotheses of yield and SOC responses.
- Long term experiments