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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Replacing organic with mineral N fertilization does not reduce nitrate leaching in double crop forage systems under Mediterranean conditions

Published source details

Demurtas C.E., Seddaiu G., Ledda L., Cappai C., Doro L., Carletti A. & Roggero P.P. (2016) Replacing organic with mineral N fertilization does not reduce nitrate leaching in double crop forage systems under Mediterranean conditions. Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment, 219, 83-92


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Water: Use organic fertilizer instead of inorganic Mediterranean Farmland

A replicated, randomized, controlled study in 2009–2012 in an irrigated maize-ryegrass field in Italy found less nitrate in runoff from plots with organic fertilizer, compared to inorganic fertilizer. Nutrients: Less nitrate was lost in runoff from plots with organic fertilizer, compared to inorganic fertilizer, in one of two comparisons (manure vs inorganic: 42 vs 89 kg N/ha; 8% vs 20%). Methods: Plots (12 x 60 m) growing a double-crop rotation of silage maize and Italian ryegrass Lolium multiflorum had one of three types of fertilizer: cattle manure, cattle slurry, or inorganic fertilizer (four plots each). Soil samples were taken from each plot (two lysimeters/plot, 10 cm diameter, 50–90 cm depth).