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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2009

Effects of surfactant use and peat amendment on leaching of fungicides and nitrate from golf greens

Aamlid, Trygve S.; Larsbo, Mats; Jarvis, Nick


Soil water repellency in golf putting greens may induce preferential "finger flow", leading to enhanced leaching of surface applied agrochemicals such as fungicides and nitrate. We examined the effects of root zone composition and the use of the non-ionic surfactant Revolution on soil water repellency, soil water content distributions, infiltration rates, turf quality, and fungicide and nitrate leaching from April 2007 to April 2008. The study was made on 4-year-old experimental green seeded with creeping bentgrass (Agrostis stolonifera L.) 'Penn A-4' at Landvik in southeast Norway. Eight lysimeters with two different root zone materials: (i) straight sand (1% gravel, 96% sand, 3% silt and clay, and 4 g kg(-1) organic matter) (SS) and (ii) straight sand mixed with Sphagnum peat to an organic matter content of 25 g kg(-1) (SP) were used in this study. Surfactant treatment reduced the spatial variability of water contents, increased infiltration rates and reduced water drop penetration times (WDPTs) by on average 99% in and just below the thatch layer. These effects were most evident for SS lysimeters. Surfactant treatment resulted on average in an 80% reduction of total fungicide leaching, presumably due to reduced preferential finger flow facilitated by decreased soil water repellency. Peat amendment reduced fungicide leaching by 90%, probably due to increased sorption of the fungicides to organic matter. Nitrate leaching was also smaller from surfactant-treated straight-sand root zones, but this effect was not significant.


azoxystrobin; hydrophobicity; propiconazole; soil water repellency; alkyl-terminated block copolymer surfactant

Published in

2009, Volume: 64, number: 3, pages: 419-423