EFFECT OF COMPOST ON THE MICROCLOVER ESTABLISHMENT AND USE OF COMPOST AND MICROCLOVER TO REDUCE LAWN NUTRIENT RUNOFF
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High volume compost incorporation can reduce runoff from compacted soils but its use also associated with elevated N and P concentrations in runoff making it difficult to assess if this practice will reduce nutrient loading of surface waters. Additionally, little is known about how this practice will effect leguminous species establishment in lawns as means to reduce long term fertilizer use. When 5 cm of compost was incorporated into soil a reduction in runoff of 40 and 59% was needed for N and P losses from a tall fescue + microclover lawn to be equivalent to a non-compost amended soil supporting a well fertilized tall fescue lawn. Use of compost as a soil amendment resulted in quicker lawn establishment and darker color, when compared to non-amended soil receiving a mineral fertilizer. Biosolid composts containing high amounts ammonium severely reduce the establishment of clover in tall fescue + micrclover seed mixture.