751-3405-00L  Chemical Nature of Nutrients and their Availability to Plants: The Case of Phosphorus

SemesterAutumn Semester 2021
LecturersE. Frossard, L. P. Schönholzer, M. Wiggenhauser
Periodicityyearly recurring course
Language of instructionEnglish
CommentNumber of participants limited to 15.
Priority will be given to students in Agricultural Sciences


AbstractThe course discusses the mechanistic relationships between nutrient speciation in fertilizer and nutrient uptake by plants using phosphorus as an example. The course involves theoretical aspects of nutrient cycling, laboratory work, data analysis and presentation, and the use of advanced methods in plant nutrition studies.
ObjectiveAt the end of this course, participants will obtain a mechanistic understanding of why and how the speciation of phosphorus in fertilizer can affect its release to the soil solution and subsequent uptake by plants. Students will be able to use this information for the development of fertilization schemes that maximize the nutrient uptake and fertilizer efficiency of crops or pastures. During the course, participants will become familiar with the use of radioisotopes and nuclear magnetic resonance as approaches to measure nutrient availability and forms, respectively and they will know the limits of these techniques. Students will also have the opportunity to improve their laboratory and communication skills.
Lecture notesDocuments will be distributed during the lecture.
LiteratureDocuments will be distributed during the lecture.
Prerequisites / NoticeThe lecture will take place at the ETH experimental station in Eschikon Lindau. See the location of the station at: Link
We strongly advise students who are planning to be absent for more than one week during the semester NOT to visit this course.
Students must have visited the plant nutrition lectures in the 3rd and 6th semesters and the lecture pedosphere in the 3rd semester of the agricultural study program of the ETH (or bring an equivalent knowledge). This knowledge is indispensable for this 7th semester.