Frontpage Forums Julkaisut/ Publications Published paper focusing benefits of multi-cropping – Finnish case included

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    Avatar photoSari Iivonen

    Congrats Pirjo and Tapio for this publication!

    Can multi-cropping affect soil microbial stoichiometry and functional diversity, decreasing potential soil-borne pathogens? A study on European organic vegetable cropping systems

    This study shows the effect of the introduction of multi-cropping in five European organic vegetable systems (South-West: Italy; North-West: Denmark and Belgium; North-East: Finland and Latvia) on: (i) soil physicochemical parameters; (ii) soil microbial biomass stoichiometry; (iii) crop root mycorrhization; (iv) bacterial and fungal diversity and composition in crop rhizosphere; (v) relative abundance of selected fungal pathogens species.

    Results showed that, just before harvest, multi-cropping can increase soil microbial biomass amount and shape microbial community toward a predominance of some bacteria or fungi phyla, in the function of soil nutrient availability. We mainly observed a selection effect of crop type on rhizosphere microbiota. Particularly, Bacteroidetes and Mortierellomycota relative abundances in rhizosphere soil resulted in suitable ecological indicators of the positive effect of plant diversity in field, the first ones attesting an improved C and P cycles in soil and the second ones a reduced soil pathogens’ pressure. Plant diversity also increased the root mycorrhizal colonization between the intercropped crops that, when properly selected, can also reduce the relative abundance of potential soil-borne pathogens, with a positive effect on crop productivity in long term.

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