Freeze-thaw effects on phosphorus loss in runoff from manured and catch-cropped soils

Marianne E. Bechmann, Peter J.A. Kleinman, Andrew N. Sharpley, Lou S. Saporito

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131 Scopus citations

Abstract

Concern over nonpoint source P losses from agricultural lands to surface waters in frigid climates has focused attention on the role of freezing and thawing on P loss from catch crops (cover crops). This study evaluated the effect of freezing and thawing on the fate of P in bare soils, soils mixed with dairy manure, and soils with an established catch crop of annual ryegrass (Lolium multiflorum L.). Experiments were conducted to evaluate changes in P runoff from packed soil boxes (100 by 20 by 5 cm) and P leaching from intact soil columns (30 cm deep). Before freezing and thawing, total P (TP) in runoff from catch-cropped soils was lower than from manured and bare soils due to lower erosion. Repeated freezing and thawing significantly increased water-extractable P (WEP) from catch crop biomass and resulted in significantly elevated concentrations of dissolved P in runoff (9.7 mg L-1) compared with manured (0.18 mg L-1) and bare soils (0.14 mg L -1). Catch crop WEP was strongly correlated with the number of freeze-thaw cycles. Freezing and thawing did not change the WEP of soils mixed with manures, nor were differences observed in subsurface losses of P between catch-cropped and bare soils before or after manure application. This study illustrates the trade-offs of establishing catch crops in frigid climates, which can enhance P uptake by biomass and reduce erosion potential but increase dissolved P runoff.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2301-2309
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Environmental Quality
Volume34
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2005

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law

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    Bechmann, M. E., Kleinman, P. J. A., Sharpley, A. N., & Saporito, L. S. (2005). Freeze-thaw effects on phosphorus loss in runoff from manured and catch-cropped soils. Journal of Environmental Quality, 34(6), 2301-2309. https://doi.org/10.2134/jeq2004.0415