• Row cropping in organic arable farming for increased productivity and sustainability

The main challenges for achieving higher and more stable yields in stockless organic farming relate to providing sufficient N supply and controlling competitive weeds. RowCrop will develop, evaluate and demonstrate a new row cropping that takes advantage of the latest developments in vision and GPS guided row cultivation systems by effectively integrating traditional arable crops with row cultivated legume-based catch crops and targeted weed control.

RowCrop will develop the scientific foundation for improved control of aggressive annual and perennial weeds in a row cropping system and for cultivating more productive N fixing catch crops to enhance crop N supply. It will document the effects of the row cropping system on productivity, weed infestation, N cycling, N
leaching and soil carbon in a long-term crop rotation experiment representing different organic crop rotation systems and different fertility and weed infestation levels. It will further demonstrate and disseminate results to advisors and farmers using field trials, open field days, workshops etc. The expected annual effects are: Economy: Yield increase of organic cereals of 1.2 ton/ha (100 million DKK).

Reduced nitrate leaching of 10 kg N/ha (500 ton N). Climate:
Enhanced soil carbon storage of 200 kg C/ha (37,000 ton CO2). In
addition the results are expected to pave the way for phasing out
import of conventional manure in organic farming and for an
enhanced conversion from conventional to organic farming.

Project period: 01-01-2014 to 31-12-2017

Project leader

Jørgen Eivind Olesen, AU
Phone and e-mail:
+45 87157 778,

Photos from the project

Erling Nielsen, AU

Ole Green, Kongskilde Industries.