The UK Situation

A recent review (Stockdale, 2001) concludes that:

1. There is insufficient knowledge appropriate to UK conditions and organic farming systems to allow organic farmers to make scientifically and economically sound management decisions enabling optimum sustainable use of P and K in organic systems.

2. Organic P is not routinely measured by any extraction procedure, and the conventional P index system cannot be simply applied in organic systems because of the complex interacting dynamics of the organic and mineral P pools in the soil.

3. Available K measured by ammonium nitrate gave a good indication of plant available K in the soil for organic systems, but not all extractable K is truly available. The K index system can be used as a reasonable guide for organic systems.

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