Improving Biological Nitrogen Fixation to Improve Soil Nutrient Status
Symbiotic N fixation is where plant roots releasing flavonoid signal for rhizobia which trigger nodule formation.
View on EDIS
PDF 2023


nitrogen fixation
soil nutrient status
N fertilizer


How to Cite

Sharma, Lakesh K., Ayush K. Sharma, Andrew Ogram, and Hardeep Singh. 2023. “Improving Biological Nitrogen Fixation to Improve Soil Nutrient Status”. EDIS 2023 (4). Gainesville, FL.


The chemical reduction of atmospheric nitrogen (N2) by hydrogen for incorporation into plant tissue is known as N fixation. Along with the carbon, N has a role in maintaining the optimum source and sink ratio, which ensures crop growth and biological yield. N is available in great concentration (≈80%) in the atmosphere in N2 form, but plants cannot absorb or uptake N in N2 form. N fertilizers are available in straight, mixed, and nano and liquid fertilizers. These approaches are not enough, though, to maximize N use efficiency to 100%. A significant amount of nitrogen is still lost in air and water bodies, leading to multiple negative impacts to the environment. Therefore, N fixation through the crop itself is a practical approach to reduce the use of synthetic nitrogen and enhance the sustainability of the food production systems. This publication discusses various methods for BNF and its importance to the sustainability of crop production.
View on EDIS
PDF 2023


Dangi, S. R., R. Tirado-Corbalá, J. Gerik, and B. D. Hanson. 2017. “Effect of Long-Term Continuous Fumigation on Soil Microbial Communities.” Agronomy 7 (2): 37.

Fowler, D., J. A. Pyle, J. A. Raven, and M. A. Sutton. 2013. “The Global Nitrogen Cycle in the Twenty-First Century: Introduction.” Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 368 (1621): 20130165.

Jaramillo, D. M., J. C. Dubeux Jr., C. Mackowiak, L. E. Sollenberger, N. DiLorenzo, D. L. Rowland, A. R. S. Blount, E. R. S. Santos, L. Garcia, and M. Ruiz‐Moreno. 2018. “Annual and Perennial Peanut Mixed with ‘Pensacola’ Bahiagrass in North Florida.” Crop Science 58 (2): 982–992.

Rodrigues, M. Â., L. C. Ladeira, and M. Arrobas. 2018. “Azotobacter-Enriched Organic Manures to Increase Nitrogen Fixation and Crop Productivity.” European Journal of Agronomy 93: 88–94.

Sharma, L.K. and S. K. Bali. 2018. “A Review of Methods to Improve Nitrogen Use Efficiency in Agriculture.” Sustainability 10 (1): 51.

Soumare, A., A. G. Diedhiou, M. Thuita, M. Hafidi, Y. Ouhdouch, S. Gopalakrishnan, and L. Kouisni. 2020. “Exploiting Biological Nitrogen Fixation: a Route towards a Sustainable Agriculture.” Plants 9(8): 1011.

Wright, D.L., C. Mackowiak, and A. Blount. 2017. Cover crops. Publication# SS-AGR-66, University of Florida, IFAS Extension Service, Gainesville, Florida, USA.

Copyright (c) 2023 UF/IFAS