Continued studies of soil improvement and revegetation of tailings sand slopes

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  • Studies were continued in 1976 into the improvement of a five year old revegetated area on a tailings sand dike by the implementation of different fertilizer programs. In June, 1976 levels of available N, P, K and S were adequate for plant growth. However, even where fertilizers were added levels of mineral N had dropped to low levels by September, 1976. Plant top production early in the 1976 season was increased by application of nitrogen fertilizer during the previous August. Continued good growth throughout the summer only occurred when extra N, P, K, and S fertilizers were added in June, 1976. The most efficient use of fertilizer occurred when nitrogen was added at a rate of about 80 Kg/ha or less. At the higher fertilizer application rates there was a tendency for Brome Grass to replace Creeping Red Fescue as the dominant grass in the sward. The accumulation of root tissues has occurred over the past five years to the extent that current root:shoot ratios vary from about 4:1 to 7:1. Erosion of the area was negligible in 1976. In two new revegetation experiments on steep tailings sand slopes, erosion could be minimized by the rapid establishment of a plant cover. This was most effective where the surface was amended with peat, mine overburden and with N, P, K and S fertilizers. The amounts of fertilizer added in the first year varied between 80 Kg-N, 35 Kg-P, 75 Kg-K and 20 Kg-S per hectare and 300 Kg-N, 80 Kg-P, 300 Kg-K and 40 Kg-S per hectare.

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    Conditions of Use Rowell, M.J., 1977. Continued studies of soil improvement and revegetation of tailings sand slopes. Syncrude Canada Ltd., Edmonton, Alberta. Environmental Research Monograph 1977- 4. 156 pp. Permission for non-commercial use, publication or presentation of excerpts or figures is granted, provided appropriate attribution (as above) is cited. Commercial reproduction, in whole or in part, is not permitted without prior written consent. The use of these materials by the end user is done without any affiliation with or endorsement by Syncrude Canada Ltd. Reliance upon the end user's use of these materials is at the sole risk of the end user.