Small Farmers and Sustainable N and P Management: Implications and Potential Under Changing Climate

  • Mehmood Ali NoorEmail author
  • Muhammad Mohsin Nawaz
  • Mahmood ul Hassan
  • Alam Sher
  • Tariq Shah
  • Muhammad Mohsin Abrar
  • Umair Ashraf
  • Sajid Fiaz
  • Mohammed A. Basahi
  • Waqas Ahmed
  • Wei MaEmail author


The use of inorganic fertilizers has been an efficient way to increase agricultural production. Ever-increasing global population threatening food security, risks of changing climate affecting plant productivity, and the need for environment-friendly agriculture are all requiring the rational use of fertilizers to improve their use efficiencies. The increase in agricultural production in the recent past and in the future is associated with intensified (many folds) use of nitrogen (N) fertilizers, whose irrational use threatens the neighboring micro- and macro-environments by polluting them (e.g., eutrophication) and thus affecting the functioning of nearby animal and plant ecosystems. Therefore, this chapter critically focuses on these challenges faced by the small farmers with persistence farming in managing the precise use of nitrogenous and phosphorus (P) fertilizers. A highlight is given on the socioeconomic features of this persistence farming, which are the key drivers for decision-making in all the agricultural activities of this type of farming. In addition, the interaction of fertilizer management and crop production is provided with respect to small farms, and the review on management strategies for rational use of fertilizers proposed by esteemed international organizations and agencies is described and analyzed with respect to scientific achievements. Best management practices for N and P fertilizers and their significance in agricultural production and plant functioning are proposed also. In last, the management of these two agriculturally important nutrients (N and P) is concluded for sustainable productivity on small farms, and the major players involved in this regard are highlighted.


Sustainable productivity Small farmers Subsistence farming Nitrogen Phosphorus Best management practices 



Ammonium nitrate


Best management practices


Calcium ammonium nitrate


Efficient Nutrient Supply in East Africa


Food and Agriculture Organization


Hydrogen sulfide


High heat value


High-Level Panel of Experts of the Committee on Food Security


International Fertilizer Association


International Fund for Agricultural Development


Methane-oxidizing bacteria


Ammonium N


Nutrient management plan


Nitrate N


Nitrogen use efficiency


Plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria


Soil plant analysis development


Urea ammonium nitrate


United Nations Environment Programme


United Nations Industrial Development Organization


Wild type


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mehmood Ali Noor
    • 1
    Email author
  • Muhammad Mohsin Nawaz
    • 1
  • Mahmood ul Hassan
    • 2
  • Alam Sher
    • 3
  • Tariq Shah
    • 4
  • Muhammad Mohsin Abrar
    • 5
  • Umair Ashraf
    • 6
  • Sajid Fiaz
    • 7
  • Mohammed A. Basahi
    • 8
  • Waqas Ahmed
    • 5
  • Wei Ma
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Institute of Crop Sciences, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Key Laboratory of Crop Physiology and EcologyMinistry of AgricultureBeijingChina
  2. 2.Department of Plant Nutrition, College of Resources and Environmental SciencesChina Agricultural UniversityBeijingChina
  3. 3.School of AgronomyAnhui Agricultural UniversityHefeiChina
  4. 4.Key Laboratory of Oil Crop Biology and Genetic ImprovementOil Crops Research Institute of the Chinese Academy of Agricultural SciencesWuhanChina
  5. 5.National Engineering Laboratory for Improving Quality of Arable Land, Institute of Agricultural Resources and Regional PlanningChinese Academy of Agricultural SciencesBeijingChina
  6. 6.Department of Botany, University of EducationLahorePakistan
  7. 7.State Key Laboratory of Rice BiologyChina National Rice Research InstituteHangzhouChina
  8. 8.Department of Biology, College of Science & ArtsSajir, Shaqra UniversityShaqraSaudi Arabia

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