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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Yields of wheat and soil carbon and nitrogen contents following long-term incorporation of barley straw and ryegrass catch crops

Published source details

Thomsen I.K. & Christensen B.T. (2004) Yields of wheat and soil carbon and nitrogen contents following long-term incorporation of barley straw and ryegrass catch crops. Soil Use and Management, 20, 432-438


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

Grow cover crops when the field is empty Soil Fertility

A replicated experiment from 1981 to 2002 on sandy loam in Denmark (Thomsen and Christensen, 2004) found ryegrass Lolium perenne catch cropping increased soil carbon (14.2 mg C/g) and nitrogen levels (13.3 mg N/g) compared to the control (12.7 mg C/g and 12.4 mg N/g respectively). Four straw management treatments were applied to barley Hordeum vulgare crops: straw removed (control: 0 t/ha), low (4 t/ha), medium (8 t/ha) and high straw application (12 t/ha). From 1981 to 1988 35 t/ha of pig slurry was applied to the straw treatments. After, a ryegrass catch crop was grown. Plot sizes were not specified. In 1999-2002, wheat Triticum aestivum was sown into the straw treatments. Each treatment was divided into 21.25 m2 plots and received 0, 60, 120 or 180 kg N/ha. There were three replicates. Soil was sampled to 20 cm depth.

 

 

Amend the soil with manures and agricultural composts Soil Fertility

A replicated experiment from 1981 to 2002 on sandy loam in Denmark (Thomsen and Christensen 2004) found that pig slurry had no effect on soil carbon and nitrogen levels. Four straw management treatments were applied to barley Hordeum vulgare crops: straw removed (control: 0 t/ha), low (4 t/ha), medium (8 t/ha) and high straw application (12 t/ha). From 1981 to 1988 35 t/ha of pig slurry was applied to the straw treatments. After, a ryegrass Lolium perenne catch crop was grown. Plot sizes were not specified. In 1999-2002, wheat Triticum aestivum was sown into the straw treatments. Each treatment was divided into 21.25 m2 plots and received 0, 60, 120 or 180 kg N/ha. There were three replicates. Soil was sampled to 20 cm depth.

 

Amend the soil with fresh plant material or crop remains Soil Fertility

A replicated experiment from 1981 to 2002 on sandy loam in Denmark (Thomsen and Christensen, 2004) found 30% higher soil carbon under high, 21% more under medium and 12% more under low straw application, compared to straw removal. Soil retained 14% of the carbon and 37% of the nitrogen from straw application. Higher grain yield was found under medium and high straw application (increased by 0.2-0.7 t/ha), compared to low or no straw application. Four straw management treatments were applied to barley Hordeum vulgare crops: straw removed (control: 0 t/ha), low (4 t/ha), medium (8 t/ha) and high straw application (12 t/ha). From 1981 to 1988, 35 t/ha of pig slurry was applied to the straw treatments. After, a ryegrass Lolium perenne catch crop was grown. Plot sizes were not specified for treatments above. In 1999-2002, wheat Triticum aestivum was sown into the straw treatments. Each treatment was divided into 21.25 m2 plots and received 0, 60, 120 or 180 kg N/ha. There were three replicates. Soil was sampled to 20 cm depth.