What Is Phosphorus Fertilizer?

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Phosphorus fertilizer is a soil enhancer that adds phosphorus to the soil. An adequate soil phosphorus level is required for healthy crop growth. Phosphorus leaches with the slope of the ground.

Benefits

  • Phosphorous aids in root and flower development and increases the rate of growth. Phosphorous is used by plants to store and transfer energy.

Availability

  • Most of the phosphorus in soil is in the insoluble form, especially in soil with a pH greater than 7.5. Optimum availability occurs when the soil pH is between 6.0 and 7.0.

Testing

  • To determine the phosphorus level in your soil, take soil samples at a depth of 0 to 6 inches in no-till fields and 0 to 12 inches in tilled fields. Have the samples tested for phosphorus at an analytical laboratory.

Sources

  • There are several types of phosphorus fertilizers including beef manure, dairy compost, verimicompost, rock phosphate and bone meal.

Considerations

  • The amount of soluble phosphorus in fertilizers is small. Beef manure contains one percent of soluble phosphorus and bone meal contains 22 percent, by weight.

References

  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images
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