Introducing PLATO, the Phosphorus Loss Assessment Tool for Ontario

Jul 02, 2020

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Keeping soil covered and minimizing erosion is a key principle of soil health. Maximizing the efficiency of crop nutrient uptake and minimizing losses are the foundation of 4R Nutrient Stewardship. When combined, these principles form the basis of a new online tool from OMAFRA called PLATO (Phosphorus Loss Assessment Tool for Ontario).
 
PLATO is a calculator that you can use to estimate the risk of phosphorus loss on your farm. It’s part of the newly re-vamped AgriSuite and uses your specific soil, crop and nutrient application information to provide a risk rating and options to improve your score.
 
Whether you’re considering a new way to apply fertilizer or manure, or you’d just like to know how you compare to your neighbours, PLATO provides answers.
 
How does it work?
 
You provide your county and geotownship, along with your soil series, soil texture and a soil test phosphorus value. Next, you select a crop type, tile drainage system and spacing details, and an estimate of erosion. Erosion can be calculated quickly by providing a maximum slope and basic tillage information or estimated more accurately by using the new Water Erosion Potential Map in AgMaps.
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