Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: December 16, 1998
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: Agricultural systems are continuously evolving as producers adjust production practices to optimize profitability. Nutrient management of cropping and forage systems is a critical component of the annual decision making process. Each growing season, yield goals and projected commodity prices are weighed against production costs including the cost of nutrient sources. The potential impact of offsite movement of nutrients was, until more recently, generally not given serious consideration in the development of cropping system management plans. Phosphorus (P) and nitrogen (N) management for the 21st century has two mutually-beneficial goals: 1) achieve optimum crop/forage growth to maintain profitable operations; and 2) limit offsite movement of nutrients. In essence, a "win-win" scenario is sought where the movement of nutrients from their application sites is limited thereby optimizing plant uptake (and yield) while preventing and/or alleviating water quality impacts. Traditional agronomic approaches, have limited potential to optimize nutrient management and control offsite nutrient transport. Integration of the factors influencing nutrient transport in the environment must involve active collaboration between scientific disciplines. Improved understanding at the agroecosystem scale is necessary if significant improvement in nutrient management is to be achieved.