SUSPHOS: Sustainable phosphorus (P) fertilization on golf courses

Summary

WP1 and WP2 were completed in 2019 (see STERF yearbook for 2019) and published scientifically in Agronomy Journal in June 2020.

WP3: Field trials were started in China, Netherlands, Sweden and Norway in 2017 and a new trial in Germany was added in 2018. The trials compare three different P fertilisation concepts: MLSN, SLAN (old American standard) and ‘Scandinavian Precision Fertilisation’ (SPF).

By January 2021, all data from the project were collected except on soil samples from China, which are still to be shipped to Norway for analyses because of flight cancellations. Data from the German trials have been analysed and the results (2018-2020) show few significant effects on turfgrass quality, which indicates that switching from conventional SLAN-based fertilisation to MLSN or SPF-based fertilisation has no impact on turf quality. Results from the other countries will follow, with scientific and popular publications in the first half of 2021.

 

Project background:

Phosphorus (P)
results in eutrophication of freshwater and is the plant nutrient for which global reserves are most limited. Many countries have lowered fertilizer guidelines for P in agriculture, but not for turf. STERF’s Precision Fertilization recommends P inputs at a constant ratio of 12 % relative to nitrogen, but this seems redundant for many soil types. The objective of this project is to generate knowledge on how fertilizer costs and environmental impact can be reduced by adjusting P fertilization to soil P according to ‘Minimum Levels of Sustainable Nutrition (MLSN)’ (Woods et al. 2016). In the  study, the need for more P at low temperature and during turfgrass (re)establishment is tested in greenhouse trials, while the MLSN guideline for P is tested on golf greens in Europe and China. Results are spread through STERF, GEO and FEGGA.

Fosfor (P) er en kilde til forurensning av ferskvann og samtidig det plantenæringsstoff der verdens reserver er mest begrenset. Mange land har redusert gjødslingsnormene for P i landbruk, men ikke for gress til grøntanlegg. STERFs gjødslingshåndbok tilrår gjødsling med 12 % P i forhold til N, men dette er trolig overflødig på mange golfbaner. Målet med dette prosjektet er å skaffe kunnskap om hvordan gjødslingskostnader og skadelige miljøvirkninger kan reduseres ved å tilpasse fosforgjødslinga til ‘Minimum Levels of Sustainable Nutrition (MLSN)’ (Woods et al. 2016). I prosjektet skal behovet for ekstra fosfor ved lav temperatur om våren og i forbindelse med (re)etablering av greener undersøkes i fytotron, og MLSNs grenseverdi for P skal etterprøves på golfgreener i Europa og Kina. Resultater vil bli kommunisert gjennom STERF, GEO and FEGGA.

Hållbar fosforgödsling på golfbanor

Fosfor är en källa till förorening av sjöar och hav och det är en begränsad naturresurs med risk att ta slut inom en nära framtid. I många länder finns stränga restriktioner när det gäller fosforgödsling. Det är därför viktigt att skapa optimala gödslingsstrategier för nordiska golfbanor dvs strategier för hur gödslingskostnader och negativ miljöpåverkan kan minimeras. I projektet medverkar forskare och praktiker från flera länder i Norden, övriga Europa och Asien. Projektet kommer att pågå under fyra år och genomförs vid NIBIO försöksstation i Norge med fältförsök på olika platser i världen.

 

Contact
Trygve S. Aamlid

Trygve S. Aamlid, NIBIO Division for Environment and Natural Resources, Turfgrass Research Group, Landvik, N-4886 Grimstad, Tel: + 47 90 52 83 78. E-mail: trygve.aamlid@nibio.no

FACTS
Category: Water, nutrients, construction
Status: Ongoing
Project period: 2017 - 2020

Fundings (kSEK)

  2017 2018 2019 2020 Total
STERF 525 551 452 458 1 986
 Other  149  177  177  173  676
 Total  674 728  629 631 2662

 

Objectives

Principal objective:

Economic savings and lower environmental impact by reduced and more targeted fertilization with phosphorus (P) according to soil analyses.

Subgoals (corresponding to workpackages (WPs)):

  1. Determine the need for extra P fertilizer for turfgrass establishment or reestablishment on sand-based golf greens with low soil P values and at various temperatures (WP 1)
  2. Determine the effect on time of green-up and turfgrass quality of foliar or granular applications of increasing amounts of P at various soil temperatures in spring (WP 2)
  3. Document effects on turfgrass quality and fertilizer costs by switching form conventional SLAN-based fertilization to SPF or MLSN-based fertilization on golf course representing a range of climatic zones, soil types and turfgrass species.

Project participants

Trygve S. Aamlid

Head of Research

Norwegian Institute for Bioeconomy (NIBIO), Department for Urban Greening and Environmental Technology, Turfgrass Research Group, Landvik, Reddalsveien 215, 4886 Grimstad, Norway.

+47 90 52 83 78

+47 90528378

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