Mobility monitoring of two herbicides in amended soils: A field study for modeling applications


This paper reports the mobility and total balance of chlorotoluron (CTL), flufenacet (FNC) and bromide ion (Br-) throughout a sandy soil profile after the application of spent mushroom substrate (SMS) and green compost (GC). Obtaining mobility dataset is crucial to simulate the herbicides’ fate under amended soil scenarios by application pesticide leaching models with regulatory application (FOCUS models). The application of organic residues is nowadays increased to improve the crop yields and there is a gap in the simulations of this kind of amended scenarios. A two-year field experiment involving unamended soil (S) and SMS- or GC-amended soil plots was conducted. CTL, FNC, and Br- were annually applied and their residual concentrations were determined in soil profiles (0-100 cm) regularly sampled. In all the treatments the order of mobility is followed as FNC < CTL < Br-. SMS and GC increased herbicide retention in the top 10 cm by the higher organic carbon (OC) content than the unamended soil, and their ability to increase the soil's water-holding capacity and to decrease water percolation. Simultaneously dissolved organic carbon (DOC) content facilitated herbicide transport being it favoured by the initial soil moisture content and the rainfall shortly after the chemicals' initial application. Over the first year, residual amounts (<2.6%) of Br-, CTL and FNC were leached down to 90-100 cm depth in the three treatments. However, over the second year low CTL and FNC amounts (<1.0%) reached the bottom layer only in S + SMS although high Br- concentrations did so in the three treatments (<20%). According to the total balance of Br-, CTL, and FNC in the soil profiles other processes (degradation, mineralisation, bound residues formation, and/or crop uptake) different from leaching below 1 m depth might play a key role in their dissipation especially in the amended soil profiles. SMS and GC are likely to be used as organic amendments to preserve the soil and water quality but in the case of SMS, its higher DOC content could imply a higher potential risk for groundwater contamination than GC.

Authors: Carpio MJ, Rodriguez-Cruz MS, Garcia-Delgado C, Sanchez-Martin, Marin-Benito JM
; Full Source: Journal of environmental management. 2020 Apr 15;260:110161. doi: 10.1016/j.jenvman.2020.110161. Epub 2020 Jan 24.