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Lawns, Lakes, and Laws. Phosphorus the element Phosphorus and plants and soil Phosphorus and lakes Sources of urban phosphorus runoff Controlling phosphorus.

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Presentation on theme: "Lawns, Lakes, and Laws. Phosphorus the element Phosphorus and plants and soil Phosphorus and lakes Sources of urban phosphorus runoff Controlling phosphorus."— Presentation transcript:

1 Lawns, Lakes, and Laws

2 Phosphorus the element Phosphorus and plants and soil Phosphorus and lakes Sources of urban phosphorus runoff Controlling phosphorus runoff

3 Issue: Over-enrichment of lakes and rivers

4 Phosphorus “P” Needed plant nutrient Most rare of the major “life building blocks” (C, H, O, N, P, S) Most rare of the major “life building blocks” (C, H, O, N, P, S) 75% of nation’s use is mined in Florida 75% of nation’s use is mined in Florida

5 Phosphate PO 4 Phosphorus is highly reactive Does not exist as an element in nature Does not exist as an element in nature Combines with oxygen to form phosphate Combines with oxygen to form phosphate

6 Phosphorus and plants Function:Energy transfer and cell division Function: Energy transfer and cell division Deficiency: Stunted growth Deficiency: Stunted growth Deficiency: Purple or yellow leaves Deficiency: Purple or yellow leaves Deficiency: More common in cool spring Deficiency: More common in cool spring

7 Phosphorus and plants Function:Energy transfer and cell division Function: Energy transfer and cell division Deficiency: Stunted growth Deficiency: Stunted growth Deficiency: Purple or yellow leaves Deficiency: Purple or yellow leaves Deficiency: More common in cool spring Deficiency: More common in cool spring RARE!

8 Phosphorus in soil “Pools” of phosphorus storage in soil 300 lbs/acre 300 lbs/acre < 1 lbs/acre Active Soil P Soil Solution P

9 Soil solution phosphorus (H 2 PO 4 - )Soil solution phosphorus (H 2 PO 4 - ) –Form taken up by plants –Mobile form –Small fraction of total soil P (< 1 lb/acre) Phosphorus in soil Active Soil P Soil Solution P

10 Active soil phosphorus Active soil phosphorus – In equilibrium with solution P – 300 lbs/acre – Tightly adhered to soil particles Active Soil P Soil Solution P Phosphorus in soil

11 Phosphorus and soil pH 6.0 pH 7.0 pH Availability of phosphorus vs. soil pH

12 Phosphorus fertilization Recommended on turf when: Solution P + Soil P < 25 ppm* * Bray P1 test Solution P + Soil P < 25 ppm* * Bray P1 test

13 Phosphorus and lakes Most limiting plant nutrient in lakes Most limiting plant nutrient in lakes Algae “blooms” = low oxygen and smell Algae “blooms” = low oxygen and smell 1 lbs P = 300 lbs to 500 lbs algae 1 lbs P = 300 lbs to 500 lbs algae

14 High growth Low light Low oxygen Impacts of phosphorus

15 10,000’s YEARS IN NATURAL CONDITIONS 10’s to 100’s YEARS UNDER HUMAN INFLUENCE Speeding aging of lakes

16 Tropic State (ppb)

17 A factor of 1,000 less! It takes a 1,000 times less phosphorus to turn a lake green than keep a lawn healthy 60 parts per BILLION 30 parts per MILLION

18 As phosphorus goes up, algae goes up, and water clarity goes down

19 Secchi Disk Secchi disk is a low-tech way to measure water clarity and determine a lake’s tropic state

20 Experimental Lake Area Study (Fisheries and Oceans Canada) Top-to-bottom curtain divides lake in two Carbon and nitrogen added to one side Carbon and nitrogen added to one side Carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus added to other – effect is clear to see Carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus added to other – effect is clear to see

21 Sources of phosphorus “When it rains, it pollutes” Think watersheds!

22 Types of runoff pollution Sediment – soil erosion, street grit Sediment – soil erosion, street grit Nutrients – nitrogen and phosphorus Nutrients – nitrogen and phosphorus Bacteria - wildlife, pets, sewage Bacteria - wildlife, pets, sewage Organics – manure, leaves, grass Organics – manure, leaves, grass Toxics – lead, zinc, copper, pesticides Toxics – lead, zinc, copper, pesticides

23 Impervious surfaces Residential Areas = 50% Impervious

24 Every city lot is waterfront property!

25 Sources of phosphorus runoff Streets Lawns Driveways Roofs Sidewalks Bannerman - Wisconsin DNR

26 Soluble plant P Soil solution P Soil particle P Product Sources of phosphorus runoff from lawns

27 Runoff from plant material (dissolved) Runoff from plant material (dissolved) Misapplied fertilizer (dissolved) Misapplied fertilizer (dissolved) Runoff from soil solution (dissolved) Runoff from soil solution (dissolved) Attached to eroded soil (particulate) Attached to eroded soil (particulate) LIKELYHOOD

28 Sources of phosphorus runoff from lawns Runoff from plant material (dissolved) Runoff from plant material (dissolved) Misapplied fertilizer (dissolved) Misapplied fertilizer (dissolved) Runoff from soil solution (dissolved) Runoff from soil solution (dissolved) Attached to eroded soil (particulate) Attached to eroded soil (particulate) LIKELYHOOD ?

29 Lbs./Acre/Year Source Source Soluble P Particulate P Bare cropland Bare cropland Plowed corn Plowed corn No-till corn No-till corn Hayland Hayland Lawns Lawns Sources: Sharpley and Menzel 1987; Rehm, 1997, Kussow, Sources: Sharpley and Menzel 1987; Rehm, 1997, Kussow, Phosphorus runoff by land use SOIL EROSION

30 Grass clippings Contain 0.13 lbs P / 1000 sq. ft. / year Contain 0.13 lbs P / 1000 sq. ft. / year That’s 0.65 lbs P / ave. yard / year That’s 0.65 lbs P / ave. yard / year

31 Controlling “P” runoff is package deal

32 Phosphorus fertilization MN law restricts P lawn fertilizer use MN law restricts P lawn fertilizer use Rarely needed on established lawns Rarely needed on established lawns Important when seeding or sodding Important when seeding or sodding Apply according to soil test Apply according to soil test

33 Reading the bag Given in % phosphate by weight Phosphate (P 2 O 5 ) not phosphorus (P)! Phosphate (P 2 O 5 ) not phosphorus (P)! P = P 2 O 5 ÷ 2.29 P = P 2 O 5 ÷ 2.29 Look for the middle number! N - P - K

34 Reading the bag Look for “the zero in middle” for phosphorus-free

35 The best way to determine P need The best way to determine P need Rare as meteor hits in the metro Rare as meteor hits in the metro Poor sample technique gives poor results Poor sample technique gives poor results Recommended when “troubleshooting” Recommended when “troubleshooting” Taking a soil test

36 Sample front and back lawn separately Sample front and back lawn separately Sample randomly, avoid odd areas Sample randomly, avoid odd areas Mix in plastic bucket – send 1 pint to lab Mix in plastic bucket – send 1 pint to lab

37

38 Two phosphorus tests used in Minnesota based on soil pH: – Bray 1 – pH ≤ 7.4 – Olsen – pH > 7.4

39

40 Selecting fert. with needed N-P-K balance Selecting fert. with needed N-P-K balance 1,000 sq. ft.??? How big is my lawn? 1,000 sq. ft.??? How big is my lawn? Setting spreader application rate Setting spreader application rate Soil test? Calibrate? Get a life!!! Soil test? Calibrate? Get a life!!! Application challenges

41 State phosphorus lawn fertilizer law State phosphorus lawn fertilizer law Local fertilizer ordinances Local fertilizer ordinances “Use” vs. “Sale” regulation “Use” vs. “Sale” regulation The law and the lawn

42 Minnesota phosphorus lawn fertilizer law assed 2002; revised 2004 First law passed 2002; revised 2004 Zero P rule goes statewide Jan. 1, 2005 Zero P rule goes statewide Jan. 1, 2005 Concerns phosphorus lawn fertilizer Concerns phosphorus lawn fertilizer Involves use, not sale, of fertilizer Involves use, not sale, of fertilizer First in nation - has drawn attention First in nation - has drawn attention

43 MN lawn fertilizer law A restriction, not a ban: 0% P 2 O 5 fertilizer required, unless: 0% P 2 O 5 fertilizer required, unless: - Newly seeded or sodded lawn - Newly seeded or sodded lawn - Soil test shows need - Soil test shows need - Applied by trained golf course staff

44 MN lawn fertilizer law When there is need to apply phosphorus, University of MN recommendations are to be followed When there is need to apply phosphorus, University of MN recommendations are to be followed Law administered by the Minnesota Department of Agriculture Law administered by the Minnesota Department of Agriculture Enforcement by local units of government as a petty misdemeanor Enforcement by local units of government as a petty misdemeanor

45 MN lawn fertilizer law Prohibited to apply fertilizer (any type) to impervious surfaces. Examples: Streets, sidewalks, driveways. Sweep up over-spread material.

46 MN lawn fertilizer law Preempts local ordinances on fertilizer use Law does not restrict what stores can sell or what customers can buy Law does not restrict what stores can sell or what customers can buy Allows pre-2002 local ordinances on fertilizer sales to stand Allows pre-2002 local ordinances on fertilizer sales to stand

47 City of Burnsville ordinance - before state law No application between Nov 15 - April 1 No application between Nov 15 - April 1 Clean fertilizer from impervious surfaces Clean fertilizer from impervious surfaces Keep outside 20 foot buffer around water Keep outside 20 foot buffer around water Apply no greater than 0% P 2 O 5 fertilizer unless new lawn or soil test shows need Apply no greater than 0% P 2 O 5 fertilizer unless new lawn or soil test shows need Notice of law needs to be posted in stores Notice of law needs to be posted in stores

48 City of Burnsville ordinance - after state law No application between Nov 15 - April 1 No application between Nov 15 - April 1 Clean fertilizer from impervious surfaces Clean fertilizer from impervious surfaces Keep outside 20 foot buffer around water Keep outside 20 foot buffer around water Apply no greater than 0% P 2 O 5 fertilizer unless new lawn or soil test shows need Apply no greater than 0% P 2 O 5 fertilizer unless new lawn or soil test shows need Notice of law needs to be posted in stores Notice of law needs to be posted in stores Locals can no longer regulate fertilizer use

49 Publication on the new law to place orders

50 0% P 2 O 5 fertilizers becoming widely available...

51 On existing lawns On existing lawns - Use 0% P 2 O 5 fertilizer unless a need for phosphorus is shown (soil test) - Use 0% P 2 O 5 fertilizer unless a need for phosphorus is shown (soil test) - Soil test if lawn if failing to thrive - Soil test if lawn if failing to thrive - Apply to UM recommendations when phosphorus is used - Apply to UM recommendations when phosphorus is used What to advise...

52 On new lawns On new lawns - Soil test to 6” depth - Soil test to 6” depth - No test? Apply 2 lbs. P 2 O 5 /1,000 sq. ft. - No test? Apply 2 lbs. P 2 O 5 /1,000 sq. ft. - Mix fertilizer well into top 6” of soil - Mix fertilizer well into top 6” of soil What to advise...

53 Leftover phosphorus lawn fertilizer Leftover phosphorus lawn fertilizer - In Greater MN, leftover phosphorus lawn fertilizer can be used up on lawns - In Greater MN, leftover phosphorus lawn fertilizer can be used up on lawns - In Twin Cities Metro, leftover phosphorus lawn fertilizer can be used on non-lawn applications (garden) - In Twin Cities Metro, leftover phosphorus lawn fertilizer can be used on non-lawn applications (garden) - If a lawn fertilizer contains a pesticide, it cannot be used for non-lawn use – dispose as household hazardous waste - If a lawn fertilizer contains a pesticide, it cannot be used for non-lawn use – dispose as household hazardous waste What to advise...

54 All lawns All lawns - Sweep up, rake up, pick up - Sweep up, rake up, pick up - Soil test if interested in “baseline” - Soil test if interested in “baseline”

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56 What to advise... Future? – practices to increase infiltration Rain garden in Burnsville, MN

57 Spring / Fall messages in the media Spring / Fall messages in the media Website with resources for citizens, cities, and teachers/students Website with resources for citizens, cities, and teachers/students TV weather broadcast / clean water feature TV weather broadcast / clean water feature

58

59 Information used A Primer on Limnology. Bruce Monson. University of Minnesota Water Resources Center. The Nature of Phosphorus in Soils. Lowell Busman, et.al. University of Minnesota Extension Service. Pub. FO-6795 Phosphorus Transport and Availability in Surface Waters. Gyles Randall, et.al. U of MN Extension Service. Pub. FO-6796 Soil Test Interpretation and Fertilizer Management for Lawns, Turf, Gardens, and Landscape Plants. Carl Rosen, et.al. University of Minnesota Extension Service. Pub. BU-1731 Understanding Lake Data. Byron Shaw, et.al. University of Wisconsin Extension. Pub. G3582

60 Ron Struss Extension Educator University of Minnesota Extension Service


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