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Diagnostic study of bambara groundnut production, marketing, agronomic practices for food security and income in kagera region, tanzania

Diagnostic study of bambara groundnut production, marketing, agronomic practices for food security and income in kagera region, tanzania

Vigna subterranean (L.) Verdc) production, marketing, agronomic practices was conducted in four villages sampled from two districts of Missenyi and Muleba in Kagera region, Tanzania, East Africa. The resuts indicated that about 93.3% of the d in BG production were female and children of less than 20 years old. Male (6.7%) were involved in land preparation in so known as assisting their women during cultivation, that means male were indirectly participating in BG production. Age wise the majority (59.2%) had age between 41 to 50, followed by elderly (20.8%) of age >50 who were involved fully in Bambaranut production compared to (20%) of age <41. The results indicated that most BG farmers had attended at least oundnut production was mainly in small holding (≤0.5ha) of about (88.3%). The 99% of BG farmers intercrop the bambaranut plants with other crops especially ) while (1%) sole plant the crop. Two planting system were d in Kagera region; Farmers plant BG on ridges along and across the hills in Missenyi and Muleba districts respectively. The yield of BG generally was low (150-400kg ha -1 ) due to lack of improved seeds (89.2%), pests and diseases especially Fusarium wilt (35%), gender imbalance, land tenure system were mentioned as constraints of the production of BG. It was noted that high price of compared to beans which costs approximately 0.75-8.00$ kg -1 in few farmers continue growing BG in the region. However, the informal marketing system was ranked highest in the study areas. Scientific investigation of the formal marketing of BG in Kagera region and Africa in large might be necessary to ensure household income.

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Effect of  Traditional  Agronomic Practices on White Rust of Rapeseed – Mustard under Organic Farming System in Manipur

Effect of  Traditional  Agronomic Practices on White Rust of Rapeseed – Mustard under Organic Farming System in Manipur

Rapeseed– mustard is one of the most important cruciferous oilseed crops basically raise for oils and vegetables to meet domestic consumption of marginal farmers during rabi season in Manipur. Field experiments were conducted under organic condition for two consecutive years (2014 & 2015) during rabi seasons at Kakching. Weekly surveys detected white rust of rapeseed –mustard on the four varieties used. Amendments of agronomic practices including sowing dates, intercropping and plant density besides addition of soil with FYM(Farmyard Manure) were found effective on fungal disease of the crop. The disease parameters were monitored through disease incidence(DI) and disease severity(DS) assessment technique. The least disease severity (9.57%) was found in plant density followed by date of sowing (11.06%) and intercropping (12.29%). White rust caused by Albugo candida attacked the crop from mild to severe form and the effect of agronomic practices applied were significant in controlling the white rust disease of the crop.

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Integrating Agronomic Practices for the Mitigation of Crack Formation on Sweet Potato Roots at Umudike, South Eastern Nigeria

Integrating Agronomic Practices for the Mitigation of Crack Formation on Sweet Potato Roots at Umudike, South Eastern Nigeria

Abstract Field experiment was conducted in 2013 cropping season to evaluate the effect of integrating different agronomic practices for mitigating crack formation on sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas) roots. Cracks are malformations on the edible roots of sweet potato which make them look unattractive, form portals for disease and pest invasion, lead to decay and high peeling loss, and reduce marketability and acceptability. The agronomic practices evaluated included; two nutrient sources NPK 20:10:10 and 15:15:15, four different harvest periods 3, 4, 5, and 6 months after planting (MAP) on the three varieties of sweet potato namely TIS87/0087, UMUSPO/1 and CIP440293. It was carried out at the Eastern farm of National Root Crops Research Institute Umudike Abia State which lies between latitude 4 0 15 1 and 7 0 N and longitude

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Agronomic practices influence the infection of an oats cultivar with Fusarium langsethiae

Agronomic practices influence the infection of an oats cultivar with Fusarium langsethiae

The importance of cultural field practices was evident in this study where significant differences were observed among the four agronomic practices. Many authors have reported on the importance of cultivation methods and the contribution of crop residue to various plant diseases, particularly in FHB of wheat (Parry et al., 1995; Champeil et al., 2004a; Champeil et al., 2004b). Presence of crop debris on the soil surface has been shown to increase the incidence and severity of FHB of wheat, the disease intensity depending on the type of crop debris, the pathogen involved, whether or not the field was ploughed and the weather conditions. This study has shown that, infection of oats can be affected in the same way as infection of wheat by cultural field practices. Minimum tilled plots with straw incorporated had significantly more F. langsethiae DNA in harvested oat grains than in the other three cultural field practices (minimum tillage with straw removed, ploughed with straw removed and ploughed with straw incorporated) suggesting greater infection in the former. The differences in the cultural practices in this study can be mainly attributed to the method of cultivation. Crop residue can be a source of inoculum for FPB where it can act as a substrate on which the pathogens can survive as saprophytes and be able to infect the crop at its most susceptible stage, the flowering stage (Xu, 2003).

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Agronomic Practices, Genetic Diversity and Population Structure of Moringa oleifera (Lam.) in Nigeria

Agronomic Practices, Genetic Diversity and Population Structure of Moringa oleifera (Lam.) in Nigeria

Abstract: Evaluation of agronomic practices, genetic diversity and population structure of Moringa oleifera (Lam.) is crucial to its sustainable utilization to ensure food and nutritional security. Four agronomic practices of field preparation and soil analysis, regeneration, weeding and pruning, as well as harvesting, were adopted. Genetic diversity and population structure of 20 populations were evaluated using amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) primer pairs (E-ACC/M- CAC and E-ACA/M-CAG). The effects of agronomic practices on leaf quantity production were evaluated using standard procedures. The physico-chemical and morphological data were analyzed using descriptive statistics, while genetic diversity, population structure, dendrogram reconstruction, and Principal Component Analysis (PCA) were analyzed from the AFLP genetic data. Significant effects (P ≤ 0.05) of agronomic practices on the quantity of leaf production were recorded across the accessions. The two primer pairs generated a total of 80 alleles with a mean major allele frequency of 0.0250. Gene diversity and polymorphic information content (PIC) values were high with a mean of 0.98 and 0.974, respectively. The mean values of effective number of alleles (Ne), Nei’s genetic diversity (H), and Shannon’s information index (I) values from the accessions were 1.2952±0.0195, 0.2277±0.0118, and 0.3882±0.0153. The Gst value of 0.0490 indicated that 5 % of the total genetic divergence was among the population while 95 % within the population. Dendrogram reconstruction with genetic distance ranging from 0.87 to 0.96 segregated the accessions into eleven clusters while PCA generated six cluster groups. Field preparation and physico-chemical soil properties, regeneration, weeding and pruning, and stand development, as well as harvesting, influenced the leaf yield and genetic diversity observed in this study. The genetic data revealed that some accessions were clustered along eco-geographical lines while others grouped disparately. Identified potential parent genotypes with valuable and desirable genetic traits can be exploited for commercial, breeding and conservation purposes to ensure sustainable utilization of the species in Nigeria.

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Agronomic practices and adaptive strategies of the farmers to climate change in central Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan

Agronomic practices and adaptive strategies of the farmers to climate change in central Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan

Individuals' observation on environmental change perceived as a basic commitment to agrarian research for the future sustainability of agriculture. This research gives a based strategy to create a foundation for the practices and ecological databases of agronomic practices of Mardan district in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa-Pakistan by choosing a sample size of 138 haphazardly farmers family units. Data was gathered in regards to the agronomic practices and climate change by interview methods. Findings revealed that in the region main crops were wheat, maize, rice and sugarcane and majority facing the climate change. Because of the climatic changes the production of various crops was altogether diminished as significant value of chi-square (14.64). Over populace (64%) and deforestation (32%) are the drivers of climate change in the area. Majority (76%) feel the change in the rain pattern and the temperature is more when contrasted with past 10 years. Ordinary, zero and hand burrowing cultivation practices are utilized for field operation and the most regular techniques for seeds sowing and fertilizer was broadcasting. The principle versatile and mitigative measure of the ranchers were changed in planting time, best decision of yield, decision of seed change and recurrence, change in manure application and timing. Destitution, ignorance, the absence of intrigue and advanced adjustment and relief strategies are the elements dependable to defeat the climate change. The surges circumstances and land degradation are the issues because of climatic changes. The study concludes that environmental changes unfavorable influenced all spears of activities of the agriculturists which have to affect economy of the country.

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Application of Decision Support System for Agro Technology Transfer (DSSAT) to Simulate Agronomic Practices for Cultivation of Maize in Southern Highland of Tanzania

Application of Decision Support System for Agro Technology Transfer (DSSAT) to Simulate Agronomic Practices for Cultivation of Maize in Southern Highland of Tanzania

The southern highlands zone of Tanzania contributes about 46% of national maize production and it accounts for nearly 90% of the maize purchased for the National Food Security Granary [2]. This zone comprises of four regions viz. Iringa, Mbeya, Rukwa, and Ruvuma. Over 80% of the maize produced in this re- gion is grown by smallholders under a wide range of agronomic practices, cli- matic conditions, and socioeconomic conditions. Beside the contribution of the zone to the country maize production, still there is a large gap between national average yield (1.4 t/ha) and potential yields (7.0 t/ha) [3]. Among the agronomic factors responsible for low yield of the region which are plant population in the field, application of inappropriate amount of inorganic fertilizers and use of low yielding varieties/cultivars are of prime importance [4]. Crop row spacing is another important agronomic management strategy used by farmers to optimize the husbandry of the soil and plant ecosystem from sowing to harvest with the goal of increasing the production of crops [5]. Row spacing has a special signi- ficance since it is ultimately related with plant population, root development, plant growth and fruiting [6]. Maize is well known for its high demand of nu- trients. In addition to other agronomic practices, fertilization may be the most important way to maintain high crop productivity and soil fertility [7]. The fact that nitrogen has a good effect on plant productivity is universally accepted. Nevertheless, it also has a pollutant effect on the environment when dissolved and leach down to ground water/aquifer zones when applied irrationally. When nitrogen is rapidly leached down to ground water, they affect human and animal health [8]. Therefore, judicious use of mineral nitrogen fertilizer should be pro- moted on improvement maize productivity [9], without reduction in yields and much adverse impact on environment (soil and ground water quality). The de- velopment of appropriate management practices can be achieved by employing crop models like DSSAT in simulation studies.

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Crop Allelochemistry, Agronomic Practices, and Herbicide Strategies for Improving Weed Management in Grain Sorghum (Sorghum bicolor).

Crop Allelochemistry, Agronomic Practices, and Herbicide Strategies for Improving Weed Management in Grain Sorghum (Sorghum bicolor).

Field experiments were conducted from 2012 to 2014 at the Caswell Research Farm near Kinston, NC, in 2013 at the Central Crops Research Station near Clayton, NC, and in 2014 at the Upper Coastal Plain Research Station near Rocky Mount, NC. Each location was naturally infested with sicklepod mixed with large crabgrass, except in 2014, at Kinston, large crabgrass and crowfootgrass [Dactyloctenium aegyptium (L.) Willd.] at Clayton and a mixture of large crabgrass, broadleaf signalgrass and yellow foxtail at Rocky Mount. Conventional tillage was performed at all locations and followed by field disking before planting sorghum. Dekalb ‘DKS53-67’ sorghum was planted at each location on a flat seedbed at an averaged depth of 2.2 cm. Standard fertilization and insect management practices as recommended by the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service were followed. Soil characteristics and planting dates are presented in Table 1. Fields were not irrigated because of the abundance of rainfall that occurred during the growing season. As a result, no visual moisture stress symptoms were observed.

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Effect of Genotype, Edaphic, Environmental Conditions, and Agronomic Practices on Cry1Ac Protein Expression in Transgenic Cotton

Effect of Genotype, Edaphic, Environmental Conditions, and Agronomic Practices on Cry1Ac Protein Expression in Transgenic Cotton

of Bt was variable. This variation was attributed to soil, climatic, and agronomic factors, as well as variation between individual plants. Greenplate (1999) observed significant differences in Cry1Ac protein expression between six field sites, indicating environmental influences on production or stability of the Cry1Ac protein. Cry1Ac concentrations in plants also showed no specific trend over time despite variation among sampling timings and tissue types, which indicated that environmental conditions may influence Cry1Ac protein expression (Greenplate et al., 2000). Often, Bt protein levels decline with time, but Wan et al. (2005) observed that levels rebounded late in the season. different plant tissues, growth stages, and cultivars provide significant sources of variation in protein levels, but some cultivars were more variable than others.

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Effect of Agronomic Practices on the Aggregate Stability and Organic Carbon of soil (Case study: the Northern of Aq Qala)

Effect of Agronomic Practices on the Aggregate Stability and Organic Carbon of soil (Case study: the Northern of Aq Qala)

Soil is accounted as a large sink for the atmospheric carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide emission from soil will increase by operations such as land-use change, biomass and fuel combustion, industrial production as well as tillage. Operations like tillage could accordingly intensify the soil biological activity, which per se leads to more carbon emission to atmosphere. Thus, utilizing the methods of seedbed preparation that cause low soil disturbances (conservation tillage) will prevent carbon emissions from the soil to the atmosphere; that in turn increases the content of soil organic matter; consequently, soil aggregate stability improves, against erosive factors. The research aims to assess the effects of different tillage systems (no-tillage, low tillage and conventional tillage) on the organic accumulation and the aggregate stability of the soil. The appropriate soil management and farming practices could exert a great positive influence upon crop yield. The study area is located in the eastern of Aq Qala, Iran. Three treatments of tillage systems, namely, traditional management, no-tillage and low tillagehave been examined in the study area in three replicates, based on the randomized complete block design (RCB ). In each tillage system, 10 soil samples of about 0.5 kg (wet) weight for each sample (totally 30 soil samples) were taken from two soil depths (0-25 and 25-40 cm) using a 4 cm diameter Edelman auger. Some physicochemical properties of soil such as total soil organic matter, soil texture, bulk density, and mean weight diameter were measured. Tillage systems did not have any positive effects on soil organic matter (SOM) at two different soil depths (0-25 and 25-40 cm). However, the results showed that no-till system significantly (P>0.05) increased the SOM content of the total measured soil layer (0-40 cm) in comparison with other tillage systems. There is no significant difference in the effects of soil tillage managements on soil bulk density. Moreover, all these three soil tillage systems caused non- significant change on soil aggregate stability against erosive factors.

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Interactions among genotype, environment and agronomic practices on production and quality of storage onion (Allium cepa L ) – A review

Interactions among genotype, environment and agronomic practices on production and quality of storage onion (Allium cepa L ) – A review

Water management. Onion is a shallow-rooted crop, sensitive to water stress (Koriem et al. 1994), and therefore the production of bulbs and dry mat- ter are highly dependent on the availability of soil water (Imtiyaz, Singh 1990; de Santa Olalla et al. 1994; Koriem et al. 1994; Martin et al. 1994; Prashar et al. 1994; Sharma et al. 1994; Thabet et al. 1994; Saha et al. 1997; Shock et al. 2000). This species is cultivated both under irrigated and non- irrigated conditions (Kadayifci et al. 2005) and, in order to avoid water deficiency, it should be taken into account that the decrease of water uptake oc- curs when about 25% available water in the soil has been depleted (Doorenbos, Kassam 1979). Fur- ther, 50% replenishment of crop water requirement results in reduced yield of marketable bulbs, due to earlier ripening and the development of either im- mature or partially matured bulbs, suffering from early rotting during storage (Kumar et al. 2007a). Moreover, since onion shows the reduction of both evapotranspiration rate and yield under water defi- cit, irrigation is necessary to obtain the optimum size and weight of bulbs, especially during the stage of bulb development (Chung 1989; Kadayifci et al. 2005). However, when water sources are limit- ed, onion plants can benefit from practices of crop management that enhance the resistance to water stress, in order to improve the efficiency of growth and water use (Abdul-Baki et al. 1992; Egilla et al. 2001). Notably, this species appears to be less sensitive to water deficit during either vegetative or ripening stage and therefore, under water shortage, irrigation deficit should be applied to the crop in these phenological phases (Kadayifci et al. 2005).

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IMPACT OF AGRICULTURAL MANAGEMENT ON COMMUNITIES OF ORIBATIDA, GAMASINA AND COLLEMBOLA IN ITALIAN AND FRENCH VINEYARDS

IMPACT OF AGRICULTURAL MANAGEMENT ON COMMUNITIES OF ORIBATIDA, GAMASINA AND COLLEMBOLA IN ITALIAN AND FRENCH VINEYARDS

Our results suggest that, even following site preparation, the assessment of abundance of the three considered groups of microarthropods can be useful to evaluate the impact of land use and of the recovering agronomic practices. Even if the selected groups are normally representing >80% of the total microarhropods inhabiting topsoil (Gagnarli et al., 2015) and result very sensitive to natural or human induced perturbations, these data should be joined with biodiversity analysis and physical and chemical parameters of the habitat to increase the inference capacity.

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Keynote address: a brief history of the establishment of the Australian soybean industry

Keynote address: a brief history of the establishment of the Australian soybean industry

Commercial soybean production in Australia began in the subtropics in SE Qld , followed quickly by NW NSW. The first extensive introductions of cultivated varieties were made in the 1930s as part of the search for high protein grains to solve the dry season ‘protein gap’ in subtropical grazing systems. Further impetus was provided by the perceived need to develop indigenous oil crops in case shipping routes were blockaded during the Second World War. However, initial attempts to grow soybeans using varieties and agronomic practices from the southern USA were unsuccessful. It was not until the late 1960s that better adapted varieties were identified and more reliable agronomic practices were developed, based on an understanding of how photo-thermal conditions affected phenology and yield potential and the implications for seasonal and regional adaptation.

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Adoption of good agricultural practices for sustainable maize and cowpea production: The role of enabling policy

Adoption of good agricultural practices for sustainable maize and cowpea production: The role of enabling policy

During the period under review, grain yields per unit area increased and decreased by 6.03% and 0.86% for maize and cowpea respectively. However, area under production of maize and cowpea increased by about 5% and 20% respectively. Thus whiles a percentage increase in area under maize production resulted in about a percentage yield increase, 20% increase in area under cowpea production only resulted in about 1% loss in grain yield (SRID-MoFA, 2011). There is the need for sustaining the yields of maize and cowpea production in the face of climate change. Grain yields of maize and cowpea are mainly low because of poor agronomic practices and poor soil fertility (Yeboah et al., 2014; Kisetu and Mtakimwa, 2013; Yangyuoru et al., 2001). Demonstration of good agricultural practices through Innovation Platform (IP) approach would aid in dissemination to bridge the yield gap (Kassam et al., 2010). This study forms part of a sustainable intensification crop-small ruminant project which aimed at improving agricultural productivity, income, food security and reduce poverty through integrated crop-small ruminant systems of small scale farmers. The study used innovation platform approach in identification of bottlenecks along the cereal/legume- small ruminant value chain. This was done through monitoring and estimation of maize and cowpea yields on farmers’ field. In addition the causes and the needed interventions on yield gaps were assessed during the project period. Thus growth and yield performance of cowpea and maize in 2012 cropping season just at the inception of the project were compared to that of 2014 cropping season right after demonstrating good agronomic practices through the project till 2014, end of the project. This was to track technology adoption and yield performance within the selected communities after inception of the project. This paper presents the impact of the project on grain yields in the communities and recommends gaps for policy intervention to encourage the adoption of good agricultural practices.

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Contemporary Global Issue of Rising Water Scarcity for Agriculture: The Quest for Effective and Feasible Soil Moisture and Free Water Surface Conservation Strategies

Contemporary Global Issue of Rising Water Scarcity for Agriculture: The Quest for Effective and Feasible Soil Moisture and Free Water Surface Conservation Strategies

servation practices developed in one region may need field testing and verification before adoption elsewhere. Moreover, all the techniques have their limitations and drawbacks, just as the effectiveness of each depends on a number of factors. The choice of appropriate techniques depends on soil, topography, climate, scale of production, and technological and socio-economic status. Prospec- tive techniques should be evaluated in the light of their potential benefits vis-à-vis the adoption drawbacks, while considering socio-cultural acceptability and envi- ronmental safety. In most but not all scenarios, carefully selected agronomic practices could serve as a sustainable substitute to the almost abandoned practice of long fal- lows which are very effective in soil and water man- agement, and may be more useful than engineering structures. However, since there are no universally ef- fective practices, combination of more than one tech- nique is considered to be a promising approach to pro- ducing efficacious results in any location. Future research in such an integrated approach to soil water management is expected to focus on the compatibility of selected possible techniques on watershed basis.

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Does adaptation to climate change and variability provide household food security? Evidence from Muger sub-basin of the upper Blue-Nile, Ethiopia

Does adaptation to climate change and variability provide household food security? Evidence from Muger sub-basin of the upper Blue-Nile, Ethiopia

In order to measure the impact of adaptation options (soil and water conservation, agronomic practices, liveli- hood diversification, and small-scale irrigation) in re- sponse to climate change and variability, this research used Propensity score matching technique. The first step in estimating the treatment effect is to estimate the pro- pensity score. To get this propensity scores, any stand- ard probability model can be used (for example, logit, probit or multinomial logit) (Rajeev et al. 2007). Since the propensity to adoption is unknown, the first task in matching is to estimate this propensity. Any resulting estimates of program effect rest on the quality of the adoption estimate. This can be routinely carried out using a choice model. Which choice model is appropri- ate depends on the nature of the program being evalu- ated. If the program offers a single treatment, the propensity score can be estimated in a standard way using, for example, a probit or logit model, where the dependent variable is “adaptation” and the independent variables are the factors thought to influence adaptation and outcome (Getachew et al. 2011b).

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Exploiting diversity to promote arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis and crop productivity in organic farming systems

Exploiting diversity to promote arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis and crop productivity in organic farming systems

Abstract: Beneficial soil microbiota especially arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) deliver essential agroecosystem services in organic farming systems, where the application externalities is often limited. Undoubtedly, organic farming provides optimal conditions for agroecological functioning due to minimal soil disturbance and limited use of agrochemicals. In this context, beneficial soil microbiota are expected to deliver optimal ecosystem services. Nevertheless, the composition, diversity and function of beneficial rhizospheric microorganisms including AMF communities vary upon agronomic practices and soil conditions. Moreover, it is well known that some modern crop cultivars are less responsive to AMF, since they are bred for high intensive agricultural systems where there is sufficient supply of nutrients especially P. Until now, the establishment and function of AMF in organic cropping systems is still poorly understood. Such information is a prerequisite for the implementation of efficient cropping systems that capitalize on biological processes, a key step towards agricultural sustainability. The overall aim of this review is to provide insights on increasing mycorrhizal symbiosis and crop productivity in organic agroecosystems through innovative, temporal and spatial manipulation of species and genetic diversity at the crop cultivar, AMF species and cover crop management levels. The bulk of this review underscores the importance of examing different levels of diversification in organic farming systems, considering functional identity (single species), composition (mixed species) and diversity (heterogeneity within species) and how such components contribute to delivery of multiple agroecosystem services.

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Agricultural practices to improve nitrogen use efficiency through the use of arbuscular mycorrhizae:basic and agronomic aspects

Agricultural practices to improve nitrogen use efficiency through the use of arbuscular mycorrhizae:basic and agronomic aspects

Using cover crops containing a mixture of different plant species can supply a broad spectrum of potential hosts that are able to enhance AMF diversity in soils and to favor their complementary effects. The simultaneous use of no-till and cover crops increased the AMF spore density and species richness both in the upper and lower clay soil layers and 33 AMF species were found under this management practice [96]. Therefore, improving our knowledge of the complex interactions occurring within the AMF community with respect to the recognition and the colonization of a single host plant is essential. This should also be carried out with a population of host plants, in order to implement efficient agricultural management strategies to stabilize or increase plant productivity using a minimum of inputs ranging from no additional fertilization, 50% and up to 75% of the recommended rate. This can be achieved by estimating the functional diversity of the AMF species that are found in agricultural soils with different management practices and by measuring their impact on plant productivity [97].

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Agronomic effectiveness of Chatham Rise sediments

Agronomic effectiveness of Chatham Rise sediments

Sediments from the Chatham Rise, a by-product from phosphate nodule extraction, could have some agronomic value for New Zealand pastoral soils. Two pot trials were carried out to investigate the agronomic effectiveness of four selected sediments with varying levels of nutrients, mainly calcium (Ca) and phosphorus (P). The first experiment tested all sediments at a range of application rates in contrasting soils growing Italian ryegrass (Lolium multiflorum). The second experiment tested one selected sediment at a constant rate of P against Chatham Rise phosphate rock (PR) and triple superphosphate (TSP), growing monocultures of Italian ryegrass and white clover (Trifolium repens). Results showed that sediment application did not increase ryegrass dry matter yield or P uptake, however did have a liming effect. One sediment, DD44W, actually reduced clover dry matter yield in the second experiment, and P uptake was significantly reduced compared to PR and TSP. The findings demonstrate that these sediments are of limited value as a P fertiliser, however the sediments with higher Ca content can be a useful liming material. The implications are that if the mining project gets consent, these sediments could be retained rather than returned to the sea floor after phosphate nodule extraction. These findings could also be beneficial in the consenting process and could provide a useful product for New Zealand farmers while also providing a solution that reduces the environmental impacts of the sea floor mining operation.

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Agronomic effectiveness of vermicompost in grassland systems

Agronomic effectiveness of vermicompost in grassland systems

Vermicompost is the proccess of organic waste breakdown by red worms (Eisenia foetida) and other microorganisms. Vermicompost increases the bioavailability of nutrients which encourages the growth of plants and germination of seedlings, thus acting as an organic fertiliser. The objective of this trial was to assess and quantify the agronomic value of vermicompost applied to six different soils with respect to perennial ryegrass uptake of applied nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium and sulphur. The vermicompost was collected from the Tuaropaki Trust, in Mokai, along with six different soils collected from their sheep and beef farm, recently converted forestry block and dairy farm. A pot trial comparing perennial ryegrass response to vermicompost and equivalent soluble nutrients was set up at the Lincoln University glasshouse in May and was harvested in September 2017. The perennial ryegrass was analysed for dry matter yield and total nutrient uptake. Results showed, the relative agronomic performance of vermicompost at 6 and 12 t/ha was low in comparison to soluble nutrient uptake, especially for nitrogen (6-7%) and sulphur uptake (8-11%). This was suggested to be linked to the nutrients held in organic form, which was unavailable for immediate plant uptake. On the other hand, phosphorus (16-22%) and potassium uptake (25-26%) increased steadily with vermicompost application, which was associated with nutrients mainly present in inorganic forms. These trends were evident across six soils and with higher vermicompost applications of 24 to 96 t/ha. The findings of this experiment clearly demonstrated, Tuaropaki vermicompost was a relatively poor short-term source of major nutrients for perennial ryegrass compared with nutrients added in soluble form. However, Tuaropaki vermicompost could potentially be a viable slow release nutrient source and a soil conditioning agent.

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