Ohio farmers will soon have access to a newly revised tool that can quickly and easily tell them their risk of agricultural phosphorus runoff that could potentially move into Ohio waterways such as Lake Erie. All with the help of an online program. The revised Ohio Phosphorus Risk Index is a program developed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resource Conservation Service to help farmers assess their risk of phosphorus moving off farm fields. It will soon allow farmers to input their farm-specific data to generate their risk of phosphorus in agricultural runoff. The revised index is the result of the multiyear On-Field Ohio project led by Elizabeth (Libby) Dayton, a researcher in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES) at The Ohio State University.
Maintaining agricultural soil phosphorus levels in accordance with the Tri-State Fertility Guidelines helps lower the concentration of phosphorus that is dissolved in agricultural runoff, according to ongoing research by a soil scientist in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University. And because erosion matters, phosphorus associated with eroded sediment can be curtailed by reducing soil disturbances such as tillage and by maintaining field cover either as crop residue or a growing crop, says Elizabeth (Libby) Dayton, a scientist in the college’s School of Environment and Natural Resources.
Elizabeth Dayton, a soil scientist in the School of Environment and Natural Resources and the On-field Ohio! project to evaluate/revise the Ohio Phosphorus Risk Index (P Index), is featured in a recent article, " Identifying practices to best manage phosphorus" in Ohio's Country Journal.