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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: PHOSPHORUS MANAGEMENT AND WATER QUALITY PROTECTION)

Author
item Wortmann, Charles
item Helmers, Matt
item Mallarino, Antonio
item Barden, Charles
item Devlin, Dan
item Pierzynski, Gary
item Lory, John
item Massey, Ray
item Holz, John
item Shapiro, Charles
item Kovar, John

Submitted to: Extension Service Bulletins
Publication Type: Other
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/12/2005
Publication Date: 2/1/2006
Citation: Wortmann, C., Helmers, M., Mallarino, A., Barton, C., Devlin, D., Pierzynski, G., Lory, J., Massey, R., Holz, J., Shapiro, C., Kovar, J.L. 2006. Phosphorus management and water quality protection. Heartland Water Quality Workgroup, Regional Workgroup Bulletin. In: The Midwest (RP187) Lincoln; University of Nebraska Press. p.23.

Interpretive Summary: Phosphorus (P) is an essential nutrient for growth of crops and aquatic vegetation. Phosphorus often needs to be applied to the land for optimal crop growth. When more P is applied to the land in the form of mineral fertilizer, animal manure, or biosolids (sewage sludge) than is required by the crop, the risk of P losses and subsequent pollution of fresh water increases. The movement of P from agricultural land to surface and ground water is a complex process involving multiple pathways. Phosphorus dissolved in runoff water and attached to soil particles eroded from the land moves into freshwater streams and lakes. Recently applied P is particularly prone to losses and is affected by sevaral factors, such as the form (fertilizer vs. manure) of P applied, the time since application, and whether it is applied over the top of the soil or mixed with the surface layer of soil. The factors contributing to P losses from agricultural land to surface water are commonly grouped as source (site and management) factors and transport factors. The purpose of this publication is to provide a resource that nutrient management planners can use to understand the risk of P losses to streams and lakes, assessment of this risk, and P management options for reducing this risk. It is targeted toward producers, local environment groups, and Cooperative Extension and NRCS personnel in Iowa, Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska.

Technical Abstract: Phosphorus (P) is an essential nutrient for growth of crops and aquatic vegetation. Phosphorus often needs to be applied to the land for optimal crop growth. Land application of P as animal manure, biosolids (sewage sludge), and mineral fertilizer can increase the risk of P pollution of freshwater. The movement of P from agricultural land to surface and ground water is a complex process involving multiple pathways. Phosphorus moves into surface freshwaters dissolved in runoff water and attached to particulate matter eroded from the land. Recently applied P is particularly prone to losses and is affected by factors such as the form of P applied, the time since application, and the placement. The factors contributing to P loss from agricultural land to surface waters are commonly grouped as source (site and management) factors and transport factors. This publication is a resource that nutrient management planners can use to understand the risk of P delivery to surface waters, assessment of this risk, and P management options for reducing this risk. It is targeted to USEPA Region 7 comprised of Iowa, Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska.

Last Modified: 8/24/2016
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