Apatite in agriculture
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Author:  Brigitte [ Mon Dec 12, 2016 9:55 pm ]
Post subject:  Apatite in agriculture

Hello everyone,

While I was searching some information on apatite, I found a 2016 article in a french-canadian journal talking about research on the use of apatite in agriculture. I was really surprised.

The research is looking to combine a mushroom to dissolve the apatite, so the plants would be able to use the phosphorus.

Here is the link for those who read french or for those ready to read bad english from google traduction. ... eloppe.php

Best regards.


Author:  Stephen Challener [ Mon Dec 12, 2016 11:27 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Apatite in agriculture

That's interesting. As I understand it, phosphorite (the phosphorous-rich rock which is mined for fertilizer, particularly in my home state of NC) is basically composed of apatite. I suspect the difference here is removing a costly or environmentally unfriendly dose of processing in between, but I'm not not well versed in this side of things.

Author:  Brigitte [ Tue Dec 13, 2016 11:39 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Apatite in agriculture

I don't know as they do not write it. But it would make sens.

Here another article about that subject. It is written that all the phosphorus used in the world in agriculture for the last 60 years come from a city in Tunisia. In that city, they seems to extract phosphorus frome rock the way you describe it, as they are left with a hill of 160 feet high, 50 meters, between the city and the sea, of powder that dust the air and contamine the air. The article is also in french. ... -chimiques

Best regards


Author:  Stephen Challener [ Tue Dec 13, 2016 5:03 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Apatite in agriculture

They do mine phosphorite there but it's not close to the only or primary source worldwide (see ... countries/) We have a mine near the coast in Aurora, NC that has a yearly fossil dig where they dump tailings piles in town and people can sort through them for sharks teeth, ray teeth, whale and porpoise bones and even rarities like amber. They also have their piles of gypsum (which unfortunately can't be used for things like drywall because they are too radioactive).

Author:  Brigitte [ Tue Dec 13, 2016 9:06 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Apatite in agriculture


Thank you for the precision. Another proof that it is best to verify what is written in a journal.

Best regards.


Author:  Hans Durstling [ Tue Dec 13, 2016 9:38 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Apatite in agriculture

Here's some English language info on the Qu├ębec apatite project. Interesting in this instance is that the apatite is of igneous origin.

Hans Durstling
Moncton, Canada

Author:  Stephen Challener [ Wed Dec 14, 2016 12:40 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Apatite in agriculture

Yeah, that would be pretty exciting. Unlike most nutrients phosphorous doesn't have a major airborne phase so plants in general are really reliant on slow weathering from minerals, and mass agriculture on these odd phosphate deposits (since guano isn't really viable for mass stuff anymore). We do need a solution to that problem long term so this really is quite neat.

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