Factors influencing the dissolution of phosphate rock in a range of high P-fixing soils from Cameroon
Nying, C. S. and Robinson, J. S. (2006) Factors influencing the dissolution of phosphate rock in a range of high P-fixing soils from Cameroon. Communications in Soil Science and Plant Analysis, 37 (15-20). pp. 2627-2645. ISSN 0010-3624
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A laboratory incubation experiment was conducted to evaluate the soil factors that influence the dissolution of two phosphate rocks (PRs) of different reactivity (Gafsa, GPR, reactive PR; and Togo-Hahotoe, HPR, low reactivity PR) in seven agricultural soils from Cameroon having variable phosphorus (P)- sorption capacities, organic carbon (C) contents, and exchangeable acidities. Ground PR was mixed with the soils at a rate of 500 mg P kg 21 soil and incubated at 30 degrees C for 85 days. Dissolution of the PRs was determined at various intervals using the Delta NaOH-P method ( the difference of the amount of P extracted by 0.5 M NaOH between the PR-treated soils and the control). Between 4 and 27% of HPR and 33 and 50% of GPR were dissolved in the soils. Calcium (Ca) saturation of cation exchange sites and proton supply strongly affected PR dissolution in these soils. Acid soils with pH-(H2O), < 5 (NKL, ODJ, NSM, MTF) dissolved more phosphate rock than those with pH-(H2O) > 5 (DSC, FGT, BAF). However, the lack of a sufficient Ca sink in the former constrained the dissolution of both PRs. The dissolution of GPR in the slightly acidic soils was limited by increase in Ca saturation and that of HPR was constrained by limited supply in protons. Generally, the dissolution of GPR was higher than that of HPR for each soil. The kinetics of dissolution of PR in the soils was best described by the power function equation P At B. More efficient use of PR in these soils can be achieved by raising the soil cation exchange capacity, thereby increasing the Ca sink size. This could be done by amending such soils with organic materials.