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Reduced tillage and green manures for sustainable organic cropping systems (TILMAN-ORG). Subproject: Improved Nutrient Management in Reduced Tillage Systems by Use of Green Manures and Appropriate Off-Farm Inputs


Project code: 2811OE002
Contract period: 01.09.2011 - 31.10.2014
Budget: 150,836 Euro
Purpose of research: Applied research

Reduced tillage and green manures are efficient conservation agriculture tools that can be adapted, in order to further improve organic crop production systems. The goals of TILMAN-ORG are to design improved organic cropping systems with enhanced productivity and nutrient use efficiency, a more efficient weed management and increased biodiversity, but lower carbon footprints, in particular by increased carbon sequestration and lower GHG emissions from soils. These goals will be achieved by adapting and integrating conservation agriculture techniques, in particular reduced tillage and improved use of green manures into organic farming systems to intensify biological soil functions like nutrient cycling, soil carbon build-up, and biological nitrogen fixation, while at the same time optimising management protocols for weeds. The specific goal of WIZ within TILMAN-ORG is the improved nutrient management in reduced tillage systems by use of green manures and appropriate off-farm inputs as an integral part of Work-Package 5 (WP5). The major task of WIZ will be to examine the response of soil C and N to both leguminous and non-leguminous green manures incorporated with different intensity and timing of soil tillage. Knowledge in this respect shall be gained by carrying out experimental case studies and feeding the collected data together with those of research partner institutions within WP5 into the soil-crop model NDICEA in order to predict soil N dynamics based on crop performance in different conservation agriculture scenarios. WIZ will share its experiences in from one long-term trial and one mid-term trial on reduced tillage and thereby contribute to the state-of-the-art analysis of WP2. Furthermore, WIZ will contribute to the refinement of methods for soil and plant analyses by supplying data from samplings using well-defined methods for the cross validation done within WP3.

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