Phosphorus testing in media
For BMPs including: Bioretention,Enhanced grass swales,Vegetated filter strips, Absorbent landscapes, Green roofs and, bulk materials including:Compost, and Topsoil, phosphorus (P) should be measured as extractable phosphorus. Extractable P is the portion that is easily available to organisms like plants and algae (i.e., available) that are present in the environmentRefers to the conditions in which an organism lives and survives or the conditions in which an organism resides. These conditions can be described as aspects of a “physical”, “social” or an “economic” environment, depending on the perspective perceived by the observer. and is the measure of immediate concern to water quality.
The quantity of extractable P is determined through acid or base extraction of a sample and testing the concentration in solution by a soil testing laboratory. Commonly used extraction methods on soil samples are the Bray and Kurtz P-1 procedure for non-calcareous soil (Bray and Kurtz, 1945) or the Sodium Bicarbonate (Olsen) method for calcareous soil (Olsen et al., 1954). The Sodium Bicarbonate (i.e., Olsen) method is recommended as the default to use for typical Ontario soils (OMAFRA, 2006). Calcareous soils are mostly or partly composed of calcium carbonate (i.e., lime or limestone). The Sodium Bicarbonate (Olsen) extraction method should be used if the soil contains more than 2% calcium carbonate (Frank et al., 2012). Modern and acceptable procedures for both types of extractions are provided by North Central Regional Research Publication No. 221 (Frank et al., 2012).
For green roof media, the Saturated Media Extract (SME) method should be used (Green Roofs for Healthy Cities, 2011). In this extraction procedure, a sample of the media is saturated with deionized water containing a small amount of Pentetic acid (i.e., DTPA) to enhance extraction of micro-nutrients (Warnacke, 1995). The SME procedure should also be used to measure concentrations of soluble salts and nitrogen for green roofA thin layer of vegetation and growing medium installed on top of a conventional flat or sloped roof, also referred to as living roofs or rooftop gardens. growing media (Green Roofs for Healthy Cities, 2011).
If laboratory testing indicates the extractable phosphorus concentration is not within the design or product specification range, notify the supplier, issue a “do not install” order to the construction site supervisor and contact the design professionals and property owner or project manager to determine corrective actions.
Assumption and Verification inspections
For media found through testing to be below the design or product specification range, or Acceptance Criteria range (Table 8.1), corrective actions are only needed if problems with vegetation cover, condition or composition (i.e., dominance by weeds) are also detected through visual inspection. Where vegetation cover is poor, unhealthy or dominated by weeds and soil P is lower than the design specification or Acceptance Criteria, schedule investigative work to do further sampling and testing to determine the affected area and depth and decide on corrective actions. Depending on the findings, corrective action could involve amending the soil with compostDecayed organic material used as a plant fertilizer. Compost helps to support healthy plant growth through the slow release of nutrients and the retention of moisture in the soil. or other fertilizer.
Amendments to green roofA thin layer of vegetation and growing medium installed on top of a conventional flat or sloped roof, also referred to as living roofs or rooftop gardens. growing media to address P deficiency should be prescribed by the media manufacturer or product vendor. Where soil P concentration is found to be higher than the Acceptance Criteria range (Table 8.1), and the BMPBest management practice. State of the art methods or techniques used to manage the quantity and improve the quality of wet weather flow. BMPs include: source, conveyance and end-of-pipe controls. drains to a nutrient sensitive receiving water, continuous monitoring during natural or simulated storm events should be undertaken that includes sampling and testing of nutrient concentrations (i.e., Phosphorus and Nitrogen) in sub-drain or surface flows from the BMPBest management practice. State of the art methods or techniques used to manage the quantity and improve the quality of wet weather flow. BMPs include: source, conveyance and end-of-pipe controls. to evaluate if the exceedance is negatively impacting effluent quality and if corrective actions are warranted. Corrective action could involve incorporating a soil additive that increases phosphorus retention, or replacement of part or all of the media or topsoil with material that is within the design or product specification.