phosphorus cycle

phosphorus cycle

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  • What is a cycle.
  • I'm glad you asked.
  • Cycles are a series of of things that certain elements go through repeatedly.
  • Like what?
  • Like the phosphorus cycle.
  •  the phosphorus cycle is how over time rocks are weathered down and release ions.
  • Is that it?
  • No that's not it, there's more.
  • Once the ions are in the soil they are absorbed by plants. After that those plants are consumed by animals.
  • Once in the plant or animal, the phosphate is incorporated into organic molecules such as DNA. When the plant or animal dies, it decays, and the organic phosphate is returned to the soil.
  • Phosphorus in soil can end up in waterways and eventually oceans. Once there, it can be incorporated into sediments over time.
  • Within the soil, organic forms of phosphate can be made available to plants by bacteria that break down organic matter to inorganic forms of phosphorus. This process is known as mineralisation.
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