Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Intercropping pea and barley is a crop management method to make more efficient use of nitrogen and other macronutrient sources

Nitrogen sources is used 20-30% more efficiently by pea-barley intercrops compared to the respective sole crops showing a high degree of complementarity between pea and barley across very different growing conditions in Europe. As a rule 20 to 40% more efficient soil mineral N uptake was achieved by the intercrops as compared to the sole crops. Similarly the use of phosphorous, potassium and sulphur was used much more efficiently in intercrops. A relative greater crop soil N uptake in barley was found forcing pea to rely on N2 fixation when intercropped raising the percent of total N derived from N2-fixation. However, increasing the quantitative N2 fixation inputs require management practices that increase N demand by pea. Intercropping and systematic planting designs is one of several management tools to adapt when optimizing local plant N accumulation.

Reported by

Risoe National laboratory
Biosystems Department, Risoe National Laboratory
4000 Roskilde
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