Modelling the optimal phosphate fertiliser and soil management strategy for crops
- 983 Downloads
The readily available global rock phosphate (P) reserves may be depleted within the next 50–130 years warranting careful use of this finite resource. We develop a model that allows us to assess a range of P fertiliser and soil management strategies for Barley in order to find which one maximises plant P uptake under certain climate conditions.
Our model describes the development of the P and water profiles within the soil. Current cultivation techniques such as ploughing and reduced till gradient are simulated along with fertiliser options to feed the top soil or the soil right below the seed.
Our model was able to fit data from two barley field trials, achieving a good fit at early growth stages but a poor fit at late growth stages, where the model underestimated plant P uptake. A well-mixed soil (inverted and 25 cm ploughing) is important for optimal plant P uptake and provides the best environment for the root system.
The model is sensitive to the initial state of P and its distribution within the soil profile; experimental parameters which are sparsely measured. The combination of modelling and experimental data provides useful agricultural predictions for site specific locations.
KeywordsMathematical modelling Phosphate Fertiliser strategy Barley field study Soil buffer power
We would like to thank the BBSRC and DEFRA (BB/I024283/1) for funding S.P. and The Royal Society University Research Fellowship for funding T.R. K.C.Z. was partially funded by Award No. KUK-C1-013-04 of the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST); J.F. by EPSRC and CORMSIS; J.H. by EPSRC Complexity DTC; and S.P., P.T., D.L., R.S-B., R.W., D.L.J. and T.R. by DEFRA, BBSRC, Scottish Government, AHDB, and other industry partners through Sustainable Arable LINK Project LK09136.
- Barber S (1984) Soil nutrient bioavailability: a mechanistic approach. Wiley-InterscienceGoogle Scholar
- Clarke D, Smith M, El-askari K (1998) New software for crop water requirements and irrigation scheduling. ICID Bull Int Comm Irrig Drain 47(2):45–48Google Scholar
- Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) (2010) Fertiliser manual (RB209). The Stationery Office. ISBN 978 0 11 243286 9.Google Scholar
- Déry P, Anderson B (2007) Peak phosphorus. In: Energy Bulletin, 08/13/2007. Post Carbon Institute. Available: energubulletin.net/node/33164
- Johnson J, Fixen P, Poulton P (2014) The efficient use of phosphorus in agriculture. Better Crops 98(4):22–24Google Scholar
- Kamprath E, Beegle D, Fixen P, Hodges S, Joern B, Mallarino A, Miller R, Sims J, Ward R, Wolf A (2000) Relevance of Soil Testing to Agriculture and the Environment. Council for Agricultural Science and Technology. Issue paper, No. 15Google Scholar
- Kutschera L, Lichtenegger E, Sobotik M (2009) Wurzelatlas der kulturpflanzen gemabigter Gebiete mit Arten des Feldemusebaues. DLG-Verlag 201–229. ISBN: 978-3-7690-0708-4Google Scholar
- Lalor S, Wall D, Plunkett M (2013) Maintaining optimum soil fertility – focus on offtake. Proceedings of Spring Scientific Meeting 2013, The fertilizer association of Ireland. No. 48Google Scholar
- Leitner D, Klepsch S, Bodner G, Schnepf A (2010) A dynamic root system growth model based on L-systems. Tropisms and coupling to nutrient uptake from soil. Plant Soil 332(1–2):117–192Google Scholar
- Mahler R (2001) Fertilizer Placement. CIS 757. Soil Scientist, Department of plant, Soil, and Entomological Sciences, University of IdohaGoogle Scholar
- Nye P, Tinker P (1977) Solute movement in the soil-root system. Blackwell science publishersGoogle Scholar
- Owusu-Gyimah V, Nyatuame M, Ampiaw F, Ampadu P (2013) Effect of depth and placement distance of fertilizer NPK 15-15-15 on the performance and yield of maize plant. Int J Agron Plants Prod 4(12):3197–3204Google Scholar
- Soil survey of Scotland Staff (1981) Soil maps of Scotland at a scale of 1:250 000. Macaulay Institute for Soil Research, AberdeenGoogle Scholar
- Sultenfuss J, Doyle W (1999) Better crops with plant food. Phosphorus fertiliser placement. Publ Int Plants Nutr Inst (IPNI) 83(1):34–39Google Scholar
- Sylvester-Bradley R, Scott R, Clare R (1997) The wheat growth guide. London: Home Grown Cereals Authority, http://www.hgca.com/media/185687/g39-the-wheat-growth-guide.pdf, last accessed 12/09/2014
- Van Rotterdam A, Bussink D, Reijneveld J (2014) Improved Phosphorus Fertilisation Based on Better Prediction of Availability in Soil. International Fertiliser Soceity, Proceeding 755, ISBN 978-0-85310-392-9Google Scholar