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Journal of agricultural and food chemistry

Characterization of nicosulfuron availability in aged soils.


PMID 18570433

Abstract

Sorption-desorption interactions of pesticides with soil determine their availability for transport, plant uptake, and microbial degradation. These interactions are affected by the physical-chemical properties of the pesticide and soil, and for some pesticides, their residence time in the soil. This research evaluated changes in sorption/availability of nicosulfuron (2-[[[[(4,6-dimethoxy-2-pyrimidinyl]amino]carbonyl]amino]sulfonyl]-N,N-dimethyl-3-pyridinecarboxamide) herbicide with aging in different soils, using a radiolabeled ((14)C) tracer. Aging significantly increased sorption. For instance, after the 41-day incubation, calculated K d,app increased by a factor of 2 to 3 in Mollisols from the Midwestern United States and by a factor of 5 to 9 in Oxisols from Brazil and Hawaii, as compared to freshly treated soils. In view of this outcome, potential transport of nicosulfuron would be overpredicted if freshly treated soil K d values were used to predict transport. The fact that the nicosulfuron solution concentration decreased faster than the soil concentration with time suggested that the increase in sorption was because the rate of degradation in solution and on labile sites was faster than the rate of desorption of the neutral species from the soil particles. It may have also been due to nicosulfuron anion diffusion to less accessible sites with time, leaving the more strongly bound neutral molecules for the sorption characterization. Regardless of the mechanism, these results are further evidence that increases in sorption during pesticide aging should be taken into account during the characterization of the sorption process for mathematical models of pesticide degradation and transport.

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