Upon completion of this course, students will be able to:
1. Understand the role of soil properties on the different nutrient forms necessary for agronomic plants.
2. Recognize and understand the different forms of nutrients in soil and the forms that are available to plants.
3. Carry out the most common laboratory methods for the determination of soil available nutrients and interpret the results.
4. Recommend fertilization.
Course Content (Syllabus)
Soil constituents and properties that affect availability of essential nutrients to plants. Soil nitrogen (N): N cycle, chemical and biochemical transformations, additions and losses. N fertilizers. Soil phosphorus (P): P cycle, P forms in soil and interactions between soil solution and soil solid phase. P fertilizers. Soil potassium (K): K cycle, K forms in soil and interactions between soil solution and soil solid phase. K fertilizers. Calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg) and sulphur (S). The micronutrients: iron (Fe), manganese (Mn), copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), molybdenum (Mo), boron (B) and chlorine (Cl). Forms of micronutrients in soil. Chemical methods for the determination of soil available nutrients. Nutrient management: assessment of requirements, season and methods of application. Other sources of nutrients except of fertilizers. Cultivation practices and nutrient management: reduced tillage and no tillage of soil.