, Volume 334, Issue 1-2, pp 391-407
Date: 30 Apr 2010

Fresh and residual phosphorus uptake by ryegrass from soils with different fertilization histories

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Organic farming largely depends on animal manure as a source of phosphorus (P) and the recycling of animal manure globally is becoming increasingly important. In a pot experiment, using radioactive P labeling techniques, we studied ryegrass uptake of P applied with animal manure and water soluble mineral fertilizer to soils that had been cropped for 22 years according to organic or conventional farming practices. The soils differed in P status and microbial activity. Labeling soil-available P also allowed assessing the uptake from residual P that remained in the soils because of their different fertilization histories. On each soil, recovery of fresh manure P in four harvests of ryegrass shoots was lower than recovery of mineral P. It ranged from 24% to 35% for manure P and from 37% to 43% for mineral P. Recovery of fresh manure P was affected by soil-available P contents. It was lower at a higher available P in a conventional soil. Different levels in microbial activity among soils were of lesser importance for the recovery of fresh manure P in plants. The recovery of residual P ranged from 9% to 15%. Residual P contained in organic cropped soils contributed less to P nutrition of ryegrass than the residual P contained in conventional cropped soils, probably due to their lower residual P contents being composed of stable P forms. The indirect isotope dilution technique is useful in assessing manure P uptake by plants, but attention must be given to added P interactions, i.e., the potential impact of organic amendments on P uptake from non-labeled soil and residual P.