Agron. Sustain. Dev.
Volume 25, Number 2, April-June 2005
Page(s) 293 - 299
Agron. Sustain. Dev. 25 (2005) 293-299
DOI: 10.1051/agro:2005010

Comparison of the leaching behaviour of two maize herbicides: atrazine and sulcotrione

Richard Cherrier, Arnaud Boivin, Corinne Perrin-Ganier and Michel Schiavon

Laboratoire Sols et Environnement, INPL-ENSAIA/INRA, UMR 1120, 2 avenue de la Forêt de Haye, BP 172, 54505 Vandoeuvre-lès-Nancy, France

(Accepted 13 October 2004)

Abstract - In a soil column experiment under outdoor conditions, we monitored the fate of 14C-ring-labelled sulcotrione and atrazine in water percolates and in the ploughed horizon of a sandy-silty soil. The application rates were 1000 and 450 g·ha-1, respectively, for atrazine and sulcotrione. Two months after treatment, the cumulative amounts of herbicide residues leached from the soil were 14.5% and 7% of the applied radioactivity for sulcotrione and atrazine, respectively. The maximum percolate concentrations for each herbicide were observed during the first month following application; 120 mg·L-1 and 95 mg·L-1 for sulcotrione and atrazine, respectively. After 2 weeks, 78% of the sulcotrione and atrazine was extractable from the soil, whereas after two months only 10% and 4%, respectively, could be extracted. The maximum sulcotrione and atrazine contents in the first ten centimetres of soil were identical. For both molecules, the content of non-extractable residues was low, being around 15%. The sulcotrione seems to be a more mobile product than the atrazine. Even if much smaller leachate concentrations would be expected to impact groundwater than those found in this study, the classification of the molecules would stay the same.

Key words: soil columns / pesticide fate / bound residues / soil and water pollution

Corresponding author: Richard Cherrier

© INRA, EDP Sciences 2005