The fertilization of forest areas has increased substantially in recent years. In all, since 1982 over 500,000 hectares of forest were fertilized which is more than 7% of the forest area (in Germany). On about 95% of the areas fertilized in 1988, magnesium-containing lime (various types such as dolomite, limestone, etc.) was applied. On about 15% of the area, additional fertilization with several minerals, containing potassium and phosphorus were applied, in addition to the limestone.
The advantage of rock dust is that it is a natural, raw material, and carrier of numerous minerals and trace elements with long term effect. The nutrients are released slowly and gently during the process of natural weathering in the forest ecosystem (without fertilization shock). In the following, we report the latest results of the experiments in the forest of Arenberg-Schleiden.