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Accessing Legacy Phosphorus in Soils

Department of Crop and Soil Sciences, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC 27695, USA
Department of Applied Ecology, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC 27695, USA
Department of Materials Science and Engineering, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC 27695, USA
Department of Agricultural Sciences, Clemson University, Clemson, SC 29634, USA
Department of Plant and Microbial Biology, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC 27695, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Soil Syst. 2020, 4(4), 74;
Received: 30 October 2020 / Revised: 11 December 2020 / Accepted: 17 December 2020 / Published: 18 December 2020
Repeated applications of phosphorus (P) fertilizers result in the buildup of P in soil (commonly known as legacy P), a large fraction of which is not immediately available for plant use. Long-term applications and accumulations of soil P is an inefficient use of dwindling P supplies and can result in nutrient runoff, often leading to eutrophication of water bodies. Although soil legacy P is problematic in some regards, it conversely may serve as a source of P for crop use and could potentially decrease dependence on external P fertilizer inputs. This paper reviews the (1) current knowledge on the occurrence and bioaccessibility of different chemical forms of P in soil, (2) legacy P transformations with mineral and organic fertilizer applications in relation to their potential bioaccessibility, and (3) approaches and associated challenges for accessing native soil P that could be used to harness soil legacy P for crop production. We highlight how the occurrence and potential bioaccessibility of different forms of soil inorganic and organic P vary depending on soil properties, such as soil pH and organic matter content. We also found that accumulation of inorganic legacy P forms changes more than organic P species with fertilizer applications and cessations. We also discuss progress and challenges with current approaches for accessing native soil P that could be used for accessing legacy P, including natural and genetically modified plant-based strategies, the use of P-solubilizing microorganisms, and immobilized organic P-hydrolyzing enzymes. It is foreseeable that accessing legacy P will require multidisciplinary approaches to address these limitations. View Full-Text
Keywords: legacy phosphorus; speciation; transformation; accessibility legacy phosphorus; speciation; transformation; accessibility
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MDPI and ACS Style

Doydora, S.; Gatiboni, L.; Grieger, K.; Hesterberg, D.; Jones, J.L.; McLamore, E.S.; Peters, R.; Sozzani, R.; Van den Broeck, L.; Duckworth, O.W. Accessing Legacy Phosphorus in Soils. Soil Syst. 2020, 4, 74.

AMA Style

Doydora S, Gatiboni L, Grieger K, Hesterberg D, Jones JL, McLamore ES, Peters R, Sozzani R, Van den Broeck L, Duckworth OW. Accessing Legacy Phosphorus in Soils. Soil Systems. 2020; 4(4):74.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Doydora, Sarah, Luciano Gatiboni, Khara Grieger, Dean Hesterberg, Jacob L. Jones, Eric S. McLamore, Rachel Peters, Rosangela Sozzani, Lisa Van den Broeck, and Owen W. Duckworth. 2020. "Accessing Legacy Phosphorus in Soils" Soil Systems 4, no. 4: 74.

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