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Reduced Nonpoint Source Pollution through Manure Use and Export in Turfgrass Sod

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Pp. 396-402 in Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) Environmental Regulations: Proceedings of the March 11-13, 2002 Conference, (Fort Worth, Texas, USA)  701P0102.(doi:10.13031/2013.7586)
Authors:   D.M. Vietor, R.H. White, C.L. Munster, and T.L. Provin

As total maximum daily loads (TMDLs) for P and N become established, stakeholders will need best management practices that reduce nutrient loads on impaired watersheds. The goal of this program is to develop and evaluate the effectiveness of a system for exporting P and N in dairy manure from impaired to less-impacted watersheds in Texas. The objectives were to evaluate amounts of manure P removed in bermudagrass sod harvests and of dissolved P (DP) lost in surface runoff during sod production under the extreme case of an 8.5% slope. Five treatments comprised two rates of manure (66 and 132 kg P ha -1 y -1 ), two rates of inorganic fertilizer (47 and 94 kg P ha -1 y -1 ), and an unfertilized control under frequent clipping. In addition, the larger rate of each manure and fertilizer were applied and plots were not clipped thereafter. Volumes and P concentrations of runoff were monitored for 3 replications of treatments during 5 rain events in each 1999 and 2000. The percentages of applied plus soil-test P removed as total P in a single sod harvest ranged from 81% for the larger manure rate to >100% for the lower fertilizer-P rate, both frequently clipped. The amount of DP loss in runoff during each 1999 and 2000 was directly related to the amount of extractable soil P. Losses of DP in large runoff volumes ranged from 1 kg ha -1 for the control to 4.5 kg ha -1 for the larger manure rate during both years. At equal rates of applied P, runoff losses of P during the first rain event of 2000 were 30 to 47% less for manure than for fertilizer sources of P. The effectiveness of manure export through sod is evident in large percentages of manure-P removal in a single sod harvest. If large rates of manure P are applied, production fields and practices need to be chosen to prevent DP losses in runoff after manure P applications on bermudagrass turf.

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