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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Nutrient Uptake of Trifolium Species Fertilized with Animal Waste

Authors
item Pederson, Gary
item Brink, Geoffrey

Submitted to: Trifolium Conference Abstract & Proceedings
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: June 1, 2000
Publication Date: N/A

Interpretive Summary: Animal waste from chickens and pigs is often put on hayfields. Hay crops can take up the fertilizer nutrients in these wastes and keep them from running off into streams. This study evaluated nine clovers to see how effective they were in taking up nutrients such as phosphorus, copper, and d zinc from animal waste. Different clovers took up nutrients better than others. Overall subterranean and red clover were best at taking up nutrients at sites fertilized with chicken or pig waste. Crimson clover was also good at taking up nutrients from chicken waste and arrowleaf clover was effective at the pig waste site. Most nutrients were located in shoots of clovers where they could be harvested for hay and removed from the field. These results demonstrated which clovers have the best potential to remove excess nutrients from field on which animal waste is being applied.

Technical Abstract: Pastures and hayfields are commonly fertilized with animal waste. Application rates are often based on N needs of plants. When N is limiting, uptake of P and other nutrients is reduced. Use of cloverrs which are able to provide their own N through fixation will help maximize P uptake. This study evaluated arrowleaf, ball, berseem, crimson, persian, red, rose subterranean, and white clover for nutrient uptake on soils fertilized with swine effluent or poultry litter. Clovers were seeded on a pasture in southern MS following poultry litter application and an eastern MS hayfield under a center pivot irrigation system applying swine effluent. Plants were dug at full bloom and separated into above and below ground portions. P, K, Cu and Zn concentration was measured via ICP and N concentration was determined by macro-Kjeldahl. Nutrient uptake for whole plants varied by Trifolium species, by nutrient, and by fertilization with swine effluent or poultry litter. Sub clover had the greatest P,Cu,Zn uptake under poultry litter fertilization. Fewer differences were noted between species grown under swine effluent fertilization. Uptake of nutrients other than K was similar between locations. Sub and red clover were the most effective clovers in nutrient uptake at both sites. Crimson clover was effective under poultry litter and arrowleaf clover under swine effluent fertilization. Ball clover was effective in Zn uptake at both sites. Most nutrients were located in above ground portion of clovers under poultry litter and swine effluent fertilization.

Last Modified: 12/19/2014
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