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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Phosphorous: Agriculture and the Environment.

Authors
item Bundy, Larry - UNIV. WISCONSIN-MADISON
item Tunney, Hubert - JHNSTN CSTLE RES, IRELAND
item HALVORSON, ARDELL

Submitted to: Soil Science Society of America Special Publication Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: October 27, 2004
Publication Date: March 1, 2005
Citation: Bundy, L.G., Tunney, H., Halvorson, A.D. 2005. Phosphorous: agriculture and the environment. Soil Science Society of America Special Publication Book Chapter. Chapter 22. p. 685-727. (J.T.Sims and A.H. Sharpley (eds.).

Interpretive Summary: This book chapter discusses the management of phosphorus (P) in agronomic systems throughout the World, with emphasis on European and North American agricultural systems. The importance of soil testing to evaluate soil P levels before applying any P fertilizer source to crop or forage productions systems is emphasized to create awareness that over application of P can increase potential for P contamination of surface water bodies. Many agricultural soils are still P deficient for optimum crop yields and economic returns, while other soils that have received high rates of P application, particularly from animal manures, may have excessive levels of P that create a pollution hazard. Management of P in various forage and cropping systems is discussed, with best management practices suggested to optimize crop yields and economic returns from P application while minimizing the pollution potential of P in the environment.

Technical Abstract: This book chapter reviews the management of phosphorus (P) in agronomic systems throughout the World, with emphasis on European and North American agricultural systems. Soil P levels vary widely throughout the World with many areas being P deficient for optimum crop yields while other areas have adequate to very high levels of plant available P. Soils with extremely high levels of available soil P generally are associated with livestock production systems and manure application. The importance of P for optimizing crop yields and quality are discussed. The importance of soil testing to determine the level of available P in soil before applying inorganic and organic P fertilizer sources is emphasized to prevent over application of P that may result in eutrophication of surface water bodies. Management practices to optimize response of crops to P application are discussed. Because of large variation in P soil test methods and interpretation of soil test values for making fertilizer P recommendations, there is a need to select 2 or 3 soil test methods as standards to which other P soil test methods could be correlated. Management practices to minimize the loss of applied P to the environment are outlined. Best management practices for managing P in agricultural productions systems for optimum yields and economic returns while minimizing pollution potential are suggested.

Last Modified: 7/28/2014