crop nutrient research News

  • Cover Crops Capture Nutrients to the Benefit of Farmers and Water Quality

    Many factors contribute to the excess phosphorous that stimulates algal systems in bodies of water such as Lake Erie. Sources of excess phosphorous include urban stormwater, factories, sewers, household wastes and lawn fertilizer, and in some areas runoff from fertilizers or manure applied to fields. Fortunately, many farmers are already doing their part to improve water. ...

  • Soil biodiversity reduces nitrogen pollution and improves crops’ nutrient uptake

    Increased soil biodiversity can reduce nitrogen pollution, improve nutrient uptake by plants and even increase crop yields, new research suggests. The two-year study found that levels of nitrogen leaching from soil with an abundant soil life were nearly 25% lower than for soil with a reduced level of soil life. Practices which enhance soil biodiversity such as reduced tilling, crop rotation and ...

  • 4R Research Fund Issues Proposal Requests for Research on Nutrients in the Environment

    This week, the 4R Nutrient Stewardship Research Fund announced the release of requests for proposals (RFP) to solicit literature reviews and syntheses on nutrient stewardship on a national, regional, or cropping system basis, and to solicit field research and demonstration projects. The 4R Research Fund was established by the fertilizer industry to help establish ...

  • The dire need to support ‘orphan crop’ research

    In spite of debate over its definition, the term ‘orphan crops’ refers to crops that are under-researched and underfunded due to their limited importance in the global market. These include cereals, legumes, vegetables, root crops, fodder crops, oil crops, fibre crops and ...


    By SciDev.Net

  • The future of cover crops

    Winter cover crops are an important component of nutrient cycling, soil cover and organic matter content. Although its benefits are well documented, cover crop use in farming systems is relatively low. Research has shown that time and money are the two primary reasons why farmers are hesitant to adopt the technique. Developing innovative and cost-effective crop cover systems could increase the ...

  • Integrating animal and crop production can reduce nutrient leaching from agricultural fields

    Nutrient leaching, the movement of plant nutrients from soil to water, can have negative effects on aquatic ecosystems due to eutrophication, which reduces the oxygen available in water, causing species and habitat loss. Ecological Recycling Agriculture (ERA), which is based on ecological principles and integrates crop production and animal husbandry, may limit this effect. This study ...

  • USDA awards more than US$28m in specialty crop research

    Agriculture Secretary Ed Schafer has announced that USDA awarded more than $28 million through the Specialty Crop Research Initiative (SCRI) to solve critical specialty crop agriculture issues, address priorities and solve problems through multifunctional research and extension. The Specialty Crop Research Initiative was established by the 2008 Farm Bill to support the specialty crop industry by ...

  • Cultivating crops on city rooftops

    To meet the challenges of producing food in a more environmentally-friendly way, the European Environment Agency (EEA) has called on cities to develop 'living walls' of edible plants. Through vertical farming, agriculture could become a feature of urban life, lowering energy consumption, carbon emissions and resource use in food production. By shortening the distance produce has to travel from ...


    By GLOBE Foundation

  • Free webinar: Managing nutrients after the drought

    Join a panel of experts as they discuss how to practice good nutrient management in the wake of this year's drought Sponsored by the Agricultural Nutrient Policy Council and hosted by the American Society of Agronomy The drought of 2012 will long be remembered for its devastating effects on crops across a huge swath of North America's most productive soils. And ...

  • CSIRO and Bayer to focus on sustainable crops

    This collaboration will develop and apply models to assess the system-wide consequences of new-generation cereal crops in the face of global environmental and food security challenges. The project will assess the full environmental impact of the crops, including their influence on the carbon footprint of cereal production. This program will build on a long-term cereal research agreement between ...

  • Nutrient Management Plans: A Study in Cause and Effect

    It seems practical on the surface. Nutrient management plans (NMPs) should supply plants with ideal amounts of nutrients, minimize runoff, and maintain or even improve the soil condition. And the farmer behind the plan would work with a set of conservation practices designed to reduce harmful pollutants while still obtaining optimal crop yields. However, many U.S. Animal Feeding Operations (AFOs) ...

  • Reality check for `miracle` biofuel crop

    The hardy jatropha tree as a biofuel source may not be the panacea for smallholders that some have claimed, say Miyuki Iiyama and James Onchieku. It sounds too good to be true: a biofuel crop that grows on semi-arid lands and degraded soils, replaces fossil fuels in developing countries and brings huge injections of cash to poor smallholders. That is what some are claiming for Jatropha curcas, ...


    By SciDev.Net

  • Climate change to disrupt soil nutrients in drylands

    The increased aridity expected this century as a result of climate change may disrupt the balance of key soil nutrients with a knock-on effect on soil fertility threatening livelihoods of more than two billion people, a study finds. The drop in nitrogen and carbon concentrations that occurs as soils become dryer could have ...


    By SciDev.Net

  • Fertilizer placement affects nutrient leaching patterns

    Controlled-release fertilizers (CRFs) are a widely used method of delivering nutrients to nursery container crops. The fertilizers contain encapsulated solid mineral nutrients that dissolve slowly in water, and are then released into substrates over an extended period of time. Although the use of CRFs is an accepted practice, growers and researchers are always looking for ways to decrease ...

  • Escaped nanoparticles hazardous to crops, says study

    Nanoparticles that escape during the manufacture and use of consumer products would substantially reduce the growth of wheat were they to end up in soil, according to Chinese scientists. The production, use and disposal of nanomaterials from sectors such as cosmetics and electronics can lead to their release into air, water and soil. Their presence in wastewater, and their direct use in ...


    By SciDev.Net

  • Target the crop not the soil - to reduce fertiliser use

    Feed the crop not the soil’ is the message of a new review into sustainable phosphorus use. Currently, phosphorus fertiliser is applied to the soil, and plants then take it up through the roots. However, more precise nutrient management is needed on farms, the researchers say, so that the phosphorus is targeted at the crop just as it needs it. Modern agriculture is dependent on phosphorus, ...

  • OPINION: Don`t sweep away crop diversity

    Anywhere you go in Malawi you find people sweeping the ground clean-floors, sidewalks, bare dirt around homes-even throughout small farms and gardens. Danielle Nierenberg visits Kristof Nordin's permaculture garden in Malawi Sweeping soil makes everything look tidy, but it causes major damage, making it vulnerable to erosion and nutrient loss. Not removing organic matter around crops has proven ...


    By Worldwatch Institute

  • Genetically Modified Crop Industry Continues to Expand

    One of the familiar narratives for the promotion of genetically modified (GM) crops is that they have the potential to alleviate poverty and hunger. But the real impacts of GM crops deserve closer assessment, writes Wanqing Zhou, research associate in the Food and Agriculture Program at the Worldwatch Institute, in the Institute’s latest Vital Signs Online article ...


    By Worldwatch Institute

  • Desert bacteria could help boost crop yields

    Desert soil microbes could help halt desertification and boost agriculture in arid regions of the Middle East and North Africa, according to a study.   Scientists from the United Arab Emirates [UAE] have isolated local salt- and drought-tolerant strains of Rhizobia, soil bacteria that fix nitrogen when they become established ...


    By SciDev.Net

  • Paul Tracy elected to certified crop adviser board

    Dr. Paul W. Tracy of Columbia, MO, has been elected to the position of Vice-Chair on the International Certified Crop Adviser (ICCA) Board. He will begin his term in January 2011, and he will become chair in January of 2012. Tracy succeeds Russell Duncan of South Carolina, who will become Chair of the ICCA Board in January 2011. Tracy received a B.S. degree in agriculture from Montana State ...

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