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EC number: 200-315-5
CAS number: 57-13-6
Application of urea (in common with other nitrogen fertilisers) releases ammoniacal-N which is nitrified to nitrate: an acidic species that causes gradual lowering of soil pH unless the effect is counteracted by lime application. This is not a direct effect of exposure to urea.
Effects of long term use of urea fertiliser at 60, 120 and 180 kg
N/ha/year was assessed on lumbricid earthworms in uncultivated turfgrass
on loamy sand soil. The test sites were treated twice yearly for 20
years. Urea fertiliser reduced earthworm numbers and biomass and lowered
pH. It was concluded that application of nitrogenous fertilisers for
long periods may have a deleterious effect on earthworms in the absence
of liming (Wei-Chum et al, 1990).
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