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This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 70 No. 2, p. 454-463
    Received: Jan 24, 2005

    * Corresponding author(s): apmallar@iastate.edu
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Relationships between Extractable Soil Phosphorus and Phosphorus Saturation after Long-Term Fertilizer or Manure Application

  1. Brett L. Allen and
  2. Antonio P. Mallarino *
  1. Dep. of Agronomy, Iowa State Univ., Ames, IA 50011


Total soil P (TP), soil-test P (STP), and the degree of soil P saturation are affected by long-term P application but relationships between these measurements need to be established for grain production cropping systems to improve P management guidelines. This research studied these relationships from samples collected from 11 long-term (4–23 yr) Iowa P trials. Mean soil clay content and pH (0- to 15-cm depth) ranged from 171 to 375 g kg−1 and 6.1 to 6.8, respectively, and maximum cumulative P application was 192 to 1098 kg P ha−1 Soil was analyzed for Bray-P1 (BP), Mehlich-3 P (M3P), Olsen P (OP), TP, P sorption index (PSI), and P saturation by STP/PSI and Mehlich-3 extractable P, Al, and Fe (M3sat) indices. Soil-test P increased as P applied increased and declined when P was not applied. Total P increased linearly with increasing BP, M3P, and OP (r = 0.52–0.55), and increases were 1.8, 1.7, and 3.5 mg TP kg−1 per mg STP kg−1 for BP, M3P, and OP, respectively. Usually STP was linearly correlated to M3sat and STP/PSI (r = 0.80–0.94), and M3sat was linearly correlated to STP/PSI (r = 0.86–0.92). Results indicate that STP can approximately estimate long-term effects of P application on TP, and soil P saturation for conditions similar to those in this study, but TP estimates are improved by grouping similar soil series. Further research for a wider range of soils and STP would be useful to better describe relationships between these measurements.

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