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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Nitrate leaching after cut grass/clover leys as affected by time of ploughing

Published source details

Djurhuus J & Olsen P (1997) Nitrate leaching after cut grass/clover leys as affected by time of ploughing. Soil Use and Management, 13, 61-67


This study is summarised as evidence for the intervention(s) shown on the right. The icon shows which synopsis it is relevant to.

Change the timing of ploughing Soil Fertility

A randomized, replicated site comparison study in 1989-1995 on coarse sand and sandy-loam soils in Denmark, found that nitrate loss from soil (leaching) was lower when ploughed in spring (81.5 kg N/ha) compared to winter (106.4 kg N/ha). Nitrate leaching was higher on coarse sand (160-254 kg N/ha) compared to sandy loam (129-233 kg N/ha) soils. Wheat Triticum aestivum, barley Hordeum vulgare and rye Secale cereal were grown at two locations. A ryegrass Lolium perenne/clover Trifolium repens ley mix was used, undersown with spring barley on areas 126 m2. Within these were two sampling plots 11 m2 (at Jyndevad) and 15 m2 (Foulum). There were five treatments: autumn ploughing with wheat followed by rye; autumn ploughing – wheat/barley; autumn ploughing – barley/rye; autumn ploughing – barley both years, spring ploughing – barley/rye. Soil samples were taken at the start and end of each treatment. Soil water, organic carbon and total nitrogen were measured.