Plant and Soil

, Volume 401, Issue 1–2, pp 23–38 | Cite as

The fate of fertiliser P in soil under pasture and uptake by subterraneum clover – a field study using 33P-labelled single superphosphate

  • Timothy I. McLaren
  • Michael J. McLaughlin
  • Therese M. McBeath
  • Richard J. Simpson
  • Ronald J. Smernik
  • Christopher N. Guppy
  • Alan E. Richardson
Regular Article

Abstract

Background and aims

Single superphosphate (SSP) is a major source of phosphorus (P) used in grazing systems to improve pasture production. The aim of this experiment was to determine the fate of fertiliser P in clover pastures under field conditions.

Methods

A procedure was developed to radiolabel SSP granules with a 33P radiotracer, which was then applied to the soil surface (equivalent to ~12 kg P ha−1) of a clover pasture. Recovery of fertiliser P was determined in clover shoots, fertiliser granules and soil fractions (surface layer: 0–4 cm and sub-surface layer: 4–8 cm).

Results

The P diffusion patterns of the 33P-labelled SSP granules were not significantly different to those of commercial SSP granules (P > 0.05). Recovery of fertiliser P in clover shoots was 30–35 %. A considerable proportion of the fertiliser P (~28 %) was recovered in the surface soil layer and was largely inorganic P.

Conclusions

Recovery of fertiliser P by clover plants was up to 35 % in the year of application. Much of the fertiliser P in soil fractions was inorganic P, which highlights the importance of inorganic P forms and dynamics in soils under clover pasture on a single season timeframe at these sites.

Keywords

Fertilizer Improved grasslands NSP Phosphorus cycling Trifolium subterraneum 

Abbreviations

ANOVA

Analysis of variance

ASPAC

Australasian Soil and Plant Analysis Council

EC

Electrical conductivity

EDTA

Ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid

ICP-OES

Inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectroscopy

LSC

Liquid scintillation counter

NIST

National Institute of Standards and Technology

P

Phosphorus

PBI

Phosphorus buffering index

PUE

Phosphorus use efficiency

PVC

Polyvinyl chloride cylinders

SSP

Single superphosphate

WSP

Water soluble phosphorus

Supplementary material

11104_2015_2610_MOESM1_ESM.docx (34 kb)
ESM 1(DOCX 34 kb)

References

  1. AOAC (1980) Water-soluble phosphorus. In: Horwitz W (ed) Methods of analysis, 3rd edn. Association of Official Analytical Chemists, WashingtonGoogle Scholar
  2. Asner GP, Elmore AJ, Olander LP, Martin RE, Harris AT (2004) Grazing systems, ecosystem responses, and global change. Annu Rev Environ Resour 29:261–299CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Barrow NJ (1975) The response to phosphate of two annual pasture species. II.* The specific rate of uptake of phosphate, its distribution and use for growth. Aust J Agric Res 26:145–156CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Barrow NJ (1983) A mechanistic model for describing the sorption and desorption of phosphate by soil. J Soil Sci 34:733–750CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Barrow NJ, Debnath A (2014) Effect of phosphate status on the sorption and desorption properties of some soils of northern India. Plant Soil 378:383–395CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Biddiscombe EF, Ozanne PG, Barrow NJ, Keay J (1969) A comparison of growth rates and phosphorus distribution in a range of pasture species. Aust J Agric Res 20:1023–1033CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bircham JS, Hodgson J (1983) The influence of sward condition on rates of herbage growth and senescence in mixed swards under continuous stocking management. Grass Forage Sci 38:323–331CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Blair GJ, Cordero S (1978) The phosphorus efficiency of three annual legumes. Plant Soil 50:387–398CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Bolan NS, Hedley MJ, Syers JK, Tillman RW (1987) Single superphosphate-reactive phosphate rock mixtures. 1. Factors affecting chemical composition. Fertil Res 13:223–239CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Braithwaite AC, Eaton AC, Groom PS (1992) Chemical effects in commercial and laboratory mixtures of ‘reactive’ phosphate rock and acidulated fertilisers. Fertil Res 31:111–118CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Bromfield SM (1961) Sheep faeces in relation to the phosphorus cycle under pastures. Aust J Agric Res 12:111–123CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Burkitt LL, Sale PWG, Gourley CJP (2008) Soil phosphorus buffering measures should not be adjusted for current phosphorus fertility. Aust J Soil Res 46:676–685CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Cayley JWD, Kearney GA, Saul GR, Lescun CL (1999) The long-term influence of superphosphate and stocking rate on the production of spring-lambing Merino sheep in the high rainfall zone of southern Australia. Aust J Agric Res 50:1179–1190CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Colwell JD (1963) The estimation of the phosphorus fertilizer requirements of wheat in southern New South Wales by soil analysis. Aust J Exp Agric 3:190–197CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Condron LM, Goh KM (1989) Effects of long-term phosphatic fertilizer applications on amounts and forms of phosphorus in soils under irrigated pasture in New Zealand. J Soil Sci 40:383–395CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Cook RD, Weisberg S (1982) Residuals and influence in regression. Chapman & Hall, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  17. Core Team R (2014) R: a language and environment for statistical computing. R Foundation for Statistical Computing, ViennaGoogle Scholar
  18. Dean LA, Nelson WL, MacKenzie AJ, Armiger WH, Hill WL (1948) Application of radioactive tracer technique to studies of phosphatic fertilizer utilization by crops. Soil Sci Soc Am J 12:107–112CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Degryse F, McLaughlin MJ (2014) Phosphorus diffusion from fertilizer: visualization, chemical measurements, and modeling. Soil Sci Soc Am J 78:832–842CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Dion HG, Dehm JE, Spinks JWT (1949) Study of fertilizer uptake with radioactive phosphorus. IV. The availability of phosphate carriers in calcareous soils. Sci Agric 29:512–526Google Scholar
  21. Donald CM, Williams CH (1954) Fertility and productivity of a podzolic soil as influenced by subterranean clover (Trifolium subterraneum L.) and superphosphate. Aust J Agric Res 5:664–687CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Doolette AL, Smernik RJ, Dougherty WJ (2010) Rapid decomposition of phytate applied to a calcareous soil demonstrated by a solution 31P NMR study. Eur J Soil Sci 61:563–575CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Dorahy CG, Blair GJ, Rochester IJ, Till AR (2007) Availability of P from 32P-labelled endogenous soil P and 33P-labelled fertilizer in an alkaline soil producing cotton in Australia. Soil Use Manag 23:192–199CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Fardeau JC, Guiraud G, Marol C (1995) The role of isotopic techniques on the evaluation of the agronomic effectiveness of P fertilizers. Fertil Res 45:101–109CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Fogel R (1960) Physical variables affecting granulation of superphosphate in rotary granulators operated batchwise. J Appl Chem 10:139–144CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Friesen DK, Blair GJ (1988) A dual radiotracer study of transformations of organic, inorganic and plant residue phosphorus in soil in the presence and absence of plants. Aust J Soil Res 26:355–366CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Frossard E, Achat DL, Bernasconi SM, Bünemann EK, Fardeau JC, Jansa J, Morel C, Rabeharisoa L, Randriamanantsoa L, Sinaj S, Tamburni F, Oberson A (2011) Chapter 3: the use of tracers to investigate phosphate cycling in soil-plant systems. In: Bünemann EK, Oberson A, Frossard E (eds) Phosphorus in action - biological processes in soil phosphorus cycling. Springer, BerlinGoogle Scholar
  28. Gallet A, Flisch R, Ryser J, Nösberger J, Frossard E, Sinaj S (2003) Uptake of residual phosphate and freshly applied diammonium phosphate by Lolium perenne and Trifolium repens. J Plant Nutr Soil Sci 166:557–567CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Gilkes RJ, Lim-Nunez R (1980) Poorly soluble phosphates in Australian superphosphate: their nature and availability to plants. Aust J Soil Res 18:85–95CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Haynes RJ, Williams PH (1992) Long-term effect of superphosphate on accumulation of soil phosphorus and exchangeable cations on a grazed, irrigated pasture site. Plant Soil 142:123–133Google Scholar
  31. He Z, Griffin TS, Honeycutt CW (2004) Evaluation of soil phosphorus transformations by sequential fractionation and phosphatase hydrolysis. Soil Sci 169:515–527CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Hedley MJ, Bolan NS, Braithwaite AC (1988) Single superphosphate-reactive phosphate rock mixtures. 2. The effect of phosphate rock type and denning time on the amounts of acidulated and extractable phosphate. Fertil Res 16:179–194CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Kohn GD, Osborne GJ, Batten GD, Smith AN, Lill WJ (1977) The effect of topdressed superphosphate on changes in nitrogen:carbon:sulphur:phosphorus and pH on a red earth soil during a long term grazing experiment. Aust J Soil Res 15:147–158CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Lawton K, Vomocil JA (1954) The dissolution and migration of phosphorus from granular superphosphate in some Michigan soils. Soil Sci Soc Am J 18:26–32CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Lehr JR, Brown WE, Brown EH (1959) Chemical behavior of monocalcium phosphate monohydrate in soils. Soil Sci Soc Am J 23:3–7CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Leikam DF, Achorn FP (2005) Phosphate fertilizers: production, characteristics, and technologies. In: Sims JT, Sharpley AN (eds) Phosphorus: agriculture and the environment. ASA CSS SSSA, MadisonGoogle Scholar
  37. Levene H (1960) Robust tests for equality of variances. In: Olkin I, Ghurye SG, Hoeffding W, Madow WG, Mann HB (eds) Contributions to probability and statistics: essays in honor of Harold Hotelling. Stanford University Press, StanfordGoogle Scholar
  38. Mason WK, Kay G (2000) Temperate pasture sustainability key program: an overview. Aust J Exp Agric 40:121–123CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Matejovic I (1997) Determination of carbon and nitrogen in samples of various soils by the dry combustion. Commun Soil Sci Plant Anal 28:1499–1511CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Mattingly GEG, Widdowson FV (1958a) Uptake of phosphorus from P32-labelled superphosphate by field crops: part I. Effects of simultaneous application of non-radioactive phosphorus fertilizers. Plant Soil 9:286–304CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Mattingly GEG, Widdowson FV (1958b) Uptake of phosphorus from P32-labelled superphosphate by field crops: part II. Comparison of placed and broadcast applications to Barley. Plant Soil 10:161–175CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. McBeath TM, McLaughlin MJ, Kirby JK, Armstrong RD (2012) The effect of soil water status on fertiliser, topsoil and subsoil phosphorus utilisation by wheat. Plant Soil 358:337–348CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. McCaskill MR, Cayley JWD (2000) Soil audit of a long-term phosphate experiment in south-western Victoria: total phosphorus, sulfur, nitrogen, and major cations. Aust J Agric Res 51:737–748CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. McKeague JA, Day JH (1966) Dithionite- and oxalate-extractable Fe and Al as aids in differentiating various classes of soils. Can J Soil Sci 46:13–22CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. McLaren TI, Simpson RJ, McLaughlin MJ, Smernik RJ, McBeath TM, Guppy CN, Richardson AE (2015) An assessment of various measures of soil P and the net accumulation of P in fertilized soils under pasture. J Plant Nutr Soil Sci (published online). doi:10.1002/jpln.201400657
  46. McLaughlin MJ, Alston AM, Martin JK (1988a) Phosphorus cycling in wheat pasture rotations. I. The source of phosphorus taken up by wheat. Aust J Soil Res 26:323–331CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. McLaughlin MJ, Alston AM, Martin JK (1988b) Phosphorus cycling in wheat pasture rotations. II. The role of the microbial biomass in phosphorus cycling. Aust J Soil Res 26:333–342CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. McLaughlin MJ, Alston AM, Martin JK (1988c) Phosphorus cycling in wheat-pasture rotations. III. Organic phosphorus turnover and phosphorus cycling. Aust J Soil Res 26:343–353CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. McLaughlin MJ, Baker TG, James TR, Rundle JA (1990) Distribution and forms of phosphorus and aluminum in acidic topsoils under pastures in south-eastern Australia. Aust J Soil Res 28:371–385CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. McLaughlin MJ, McBeath TM, Smernik RJ, Stacey SP, Ajiboye B, Guppy CN (2011) The chemical nature of P accumulation in agricultural soils—implications for fertiliser management and design: an Australian perspective. Plant Soil 349:69–87CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Mitchell J, Kristianson AM, Dion HG, Spinks JWT (1952) Availability of fertilizer and soil phosphorus to grain crops, and the effect of placement and rate of application on phosphorus uptake. Sci Agric 32:511–525Google Scholar
  52. Morel C, Fardeau JC (1989) The uptake by crops of fresh and residual phosphatic fertilizers by simultaneous measurements with 32P and 33P. Int J Rad Appl Instrum A 40:273–278CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Morel C, Fardeau JC (1990) Uptake of phosphate from soils and fertilizers as affected by soil P availability and solubility of phosphorus fertilizers. Plant Soil 121:217–224CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Mullins GL, Sikora FJ, Williams JC (1995) Effect of water-soluble phosphorus on the effectiveness of triple superphosphate fertilizers. Soil Sci Soc Am J 59:256–260CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Murphy J, Riley JP (1962) A modified single solution method for the determination of phosphate in natural waters. Anal Chim Acta 27:31–36CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Nelson WL, Krantz BA, Colwell WE, Woltz WG, Hawkins A, Dean LA, MacKenzie AJ, Rubins EJ (1948) Application of radioactive tracer technique to studies of phosphatic fertilizer utilization by crops: II. Field experiments. Soil Sci Soc Am Proc 12:113–118CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Nunn RJ, Dee TP (1954) Superphosphate production: the influence of various factors on the speed of reaction and the composition of the product. J Sci Food Agric 5:257–265CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Olsen SR, Cole CV, Watanabe FS (1954) Estimation of available phosphorus in soils by extraction with sodium bicarbonate. USDA, WashingtonGoogle Scholar
  59. Oniani OG, Chater M, Mattingly GEG (1973) Some effects of fertilizers and farmyard manure on the organic phosphorus in soils. J Soil Sci 24:1–9CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Ozanne PG, Kirkton DJ, Shaw TC (1961) The loss of phosphorus from sandy soils. Aust J Agric Res 12:409–423CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Paynter BH (1990) Comparative phosphate requirements of yellow serradella (Ornithopus compressus) burr medic (Medicago polymorpha var. brevispina) and subterranean clover (Trifolium subterraneum). Aust J Exp Agric 30:507–514CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. Pinkerton A, Simpson JR (1986) Interactions of surface drying and subsurface nutrients affecting plant growth on acidic soil profiles from an old pasture. Aust J Exp Agric 26:681–689CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. Prochnow LI, Clemente CA, Dillard EF, Melfi A, Kauwenbergh S (2001) Identification of compounds present in single superphosphates produced from brazilian phosphate rocks using SEM, EDX, and X-ray techniques. Soil Sci 166:336–344CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Prochnow LI, Chien SH, Carmona G, Henao J (2004) Greenhouse evaluation of phosphorus sources produced from a low-reactive Brazilian phosphate rock. Agron J 96:761–768CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. Reuter DJ, Dyson CB, Elliott DE, Lewis DC, Rudd CL (1995) An appraisal of soil phosphorus testing data for crops and pastures in South Australia. Aust J Exp Agric 35:979–995CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  66. Russell JS (1960) Soil fertility changes in the long-term experimental plots at Kybybolite, South Australia. I. Changes in pH total nitrogen, organic carbon, and bulk density. Aust J Agric Res 11:902–926CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Saunders WMH, Williams EG (1955) Observations on the determination of total organic phosphorus in soils. J Soil Sci 6:254–267CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. Scott BJ (1973) The response of barrel medic pasture to topdressed and placed superphosphate in central western New South Wales. Aust J Exp Agric 13:705–710CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  69. Shapiro SS, Wilk MB (1965) An analysis of variance test for normality (complete samples). Biometrika 52:591–611CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. Sharpley AN (1986) Disposition of fertilizer phosphorus applied to winter wheat. Soil Sci Soc Am J 50:953–958CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Simpson JR, Bromfield SM, Jones OL (1974) Effects of management on soil fertility under pasture. 3. Changes in total soil nitrogen, carbon, phosphorus and exchangeable cations. Aust J Exp Agric 14:487–494CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  72. Simpson JR, Stefanski A, Marshall DJ, Moore AD, Richardson AE (2010) The farm-gate phosphorus balance of sheep grazing systems maintained at three contrasting soil fertility levels. In: Dove H, Culvenor RA (eds) Proceedings of 15th Agronomy Conference. The Regional Institute Ltd, LincolnGoogle Scholar
  73. Simpson RJ, Oberson A, Culvenor RA, Ryan MH, Veneklaas EJ, Lambers H, Lynch JP, Ryan PR, Delhaize E, Smith A, Smith SE, Harvey PR, Richardson AE (2011) Strategies and agronomic interventions to improve the phosphorus-use efficiency of farming systems. Plant Soil 349:89–120CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  74. Spinks JWT, Barber SA (1947) Study of fertilizer uptake using radioactive phosphorus. Sci Agric 27:145–156Google Scholar
  75. Walker TW, Adams AFR (1958) Studies on soil organic matter: I. Influence of phosphorus content of parent materials on accumulations of carbon, nitrogen, sulfur, and organic phosphorus in grassland soils. Soil Sci 85:307–318CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  76. Watson ER (1969) The influence of subterranean clover pastures on soil fertility. III. The effect of applied phosphorus and sulphur. Aust J Agric Res 20:447–456CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  77. Weaver DM, Wong MTF (2011) Scope to improve phosphorus (P) management and balance efficiency of crop and pasture soils with contrasting P status and buffering indices. Plant Soil 349:37–54CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  78. Williams CH (1971a) Reaction of surface-applied superphosphate with soil. I. The fertilizer solution and its initial reaction with soil. Aust J Soil Res 9:83–94CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  79. Williams CH (1971b) Reaction of surface-applied superphosphate with soil. II. Movement of the phosphorus and sulphur into the soil. Aust J Soil Res 9:95–106CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  80. Williams PH, Haynes RJ (1992) Balance sheet of phosphorus, sulphur and potassium in a long-term grazed pasture supplied with superphosphate. Fertil Res 31:51–60CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  81. Zarcinas BA, Cartwright B, Spouncer LR (1987) Nitric acid digestion and multi-element analysis of plant material by inductively coupled plasma spectrometry. Commun Soil Sci Plant Anal 18:131–146CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  82. Zarcinas BA, McLaughlin MJ, Smart MK (1996) The effect of acid digestion technique on the performance of nebulization systems used in inductively coupled plasma spectrometry. Commun Soil Sci Plant Anal 27:1331–1354CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Timothy I. McLaren
    • 1
    • 2
  • Michael J. McLaughlin
    • 1
    • 3
  • Therese M. McBeath
    • 1
    • 4
  • Richard J. Simpson
    • 5
  • Ronald J. Smernik
    • 1
  • Christopher N. Guppy
    • 2
  • Alan E. Richardson
    • 5
  1. 1.Soils Group, School of Agriculture, Food and Wine and Waite Research InstituteThe University of AdelaideUrrbraeAustralia
  2. 2.School of Environmental and Rural ScienceUniversity of New EnglandArmidaleAustralia
  3. 3.CSIRO Land and WaterGlen OsmondAustralia
  4. 4.CSIRO Agriculture FlagshipGlen OsmondAustralia
  5. 5.CSIRO Agriculture FlagshipCanberraAustralia

Personalised recommendations