1) The Netherlands Case Study - decline in organic matter in peat soils

The researcers in The Netherlands are testing the effectiveness of infiltration via submerged drains to reduce peat oxidation and so the loss of organic matter.

Submerged drains
Submerged drains in peat soils

results

Preliminary results:

Results survey among 30 dairy farmers with submerged drains: 

  • About 10% area drained (submerged)
  • Aim to increase trafficability and decrease subsidence
  •  75% is positive (better trafficability, better grass yield, less drought
  •  25% doesn’t see an improvement
  •  this 25% have wide distances (> 6 m) or high ditchwater levels (< 50 cm -surface) according most farmers governments and wate rboards lack a vision on submerged drains
  • better insight in costs and benefits is required
  • a majority will install more submerged drains if subsidized

 

Results pilots with infiltration via submerged drains to conserve peat:

Infiltration via submerged drains reduces the subsidence with 50 -70% depending on the ditch water level. Combination of submerged drains with a high ditchwater level of about 20 cm minus surface level reduces subsidence to less than 1 mm per year.

 

 

For more information about this RECARE experiment, please contact Jan van den Akker This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

  

2) Sweden Case Study - loss of organic matter in organic soil

The researchers in Sweden are testing different crops, especially reed canary grass and Tall fescue and comparing them with the "ususal" crop timothy, regarding yield and CO2 emissions.

An aeriel view of the case study site

 

 

 

Sweden experiment
Swedish Case Study Experimental site

Preliminary results:

Effects of treatments on soil proprties

results1

Penetration resistance (average of measurements at 10-20 cm depth) in July and October for Reed canarygrass(RCG), Timothy (T) and Tall fescue (TF).

Effect of treatments on soil threat

 results2

The N2Oemission was quite low during the growing season and no significant difference between the crops could be found. The total yield from 2 cuts (t DM/ha) of T was 6.6. RCG yielded 9.3 and TF 8.6.

 

For more information about this RECARE experiment, please contact Kerstin Berglund This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.