Cover crops alter the soil nematode food web in banana agroecosystems

  • Published source details Djigal D., Chabrier C., Duyck P.-F., Achard R., Quénéhervé P. & Tixier P. (2012) Cover crops alter the soil nematode food web in banana agroecosystems. Soil Biology & Biochemistry, 48, 142-150.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Grow cover crops when the field is empty

Action Link
Soil Fertility
  1. Grow cover crops when the field is empty

    A replicated, randomized, controlled experiment in 2010-2011 on clay soil, in central Martinique (Djigal et al. 2012), found more diverse soil nematode communities under cover crops (0.8 Shannon index) than in the no cover crop control (0.45 Shannon index), with grass cover crops having the highest soil nematode diversity (1.2 Shannon index). The study used six treatments in an old banana Musa spp. system: control without cover crop, a self-seeded cover crop, a grass Paspalum notatum cv. common, and three legumes (perennial soybean Neonotonia wightii, tropical kudzu Pueraria phaseoloides, and Brazilian Lucerne Stylosanthes guyanensis). There were three replicate plots of each treatment, giving a total of 18 plots. Four soil samples were taken from each plot twice, once at 16 and again at 20 months after the experiment was established. Soil samples were then mixed prior to analysis in the laboratory.


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