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1 May 2013 Serpentine affected soils and the formation of magnesium phosphates (struvite)
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Abstract

Baugé, S. M. Y., Lavkulich, L. M. and Schreier, H. E. 2013. Serpentine affected soils and the formation of magnesium phosphates (struvite). Can. J. Soil Sci. 93: 161-172. The Sumas River watershed, located in the intensive agricultural region of the Lower Fraser Valley of British Columbia (Canada), contains serpentine asbestos from a natural landslide. Serpentinic soils have a high Mg to Ca ratio that can affect soil fertility, including soil-solution P relations. The objectives of the study were: (i) to evaluate some common methods of estimating plant available phosphorus in the surface horizons of the serpentine-affected soils and those receiving large quantities of livestock manure, and (ii) to determine if there is evidence for the formation of soluble Mg phosphates, e.g., struvite, a meta-stable P phase in these soils. Seven soil nutrient extractants were used to determine major and minor elemental concentrations. Acid ammonium oxalate, 1 M HCl and Bray P1 extractions were most effective for measuring available phosphorus in these soils. Manure and fertilizer applications appear to favor the formation of Mg-phosphates, and are considered to be more soluble in terms of phosphorus than either calcium-phosphates or aluminum/iron-phosphates. X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy and nuclear magnetic resonance examinations gave positive evidence for the presence of struvite in the soils.

S. M. Y. Baugé, L. M. Lavkulich, and H. E. Schreier "Serpentine affected soils and the formation of magnesium phosphates (struvite)," Canadian Journal of Soil Science 93(2), 161-172, (1 May 2013). https://doi.org/10.1139/CJSS2012-117
Received: 24 October 2012; Accepted: 1 February 2013; Published: 1 May 2013
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