Acta Agriculturae Scandinavica, Section B — Soil & Plant Science

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ISSN / EISSN : 0906-4710 / 1651-1913
Published by: Informa UK Limited (10.1080)
Total articles ≅ 1,868
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, , Eero Liski, Visa Nuutinen, Mercy Nyambura, Mia Tiljander
Acta Agriculturae Scandinavica, Section B — Soil & Plant Science, Volume 72, pp 751-760;

Mineral composition is a fundamental feature that affects the properties and functions of soil through physical, chemical and biological interactions. However, comprehensive knowledge on the mineralogy of agricultural topsoils of Finland has been lacking. In this study, the mineral composition of 120 soil samples included in the national monitoring of agricultural soils of Finland was determined using state-of-the-art quantitative x-ray diffraction analysis by a prior measured full pattern fitting methodology. Quartz, plagioclase and K-feldspar were found to be the dominant soil mineral components. Amphiboles and micas were also common, and several other mineral phases were detected in small quantities. The relative proportions of quartz and plagioclases increased and those of mica, goethite, disordered clay minerals, kaolin and amorphous inorganic components decreased as the soil particle size increased. Compositional statistical analysis discerned a positive association between the prevalence of 12 elements and organic matter and surface-active minerals (goethite, chlorite, disordered clays, kaolin and inorganic amorphous materials), whereas micas contributed to the prevalence of K. The present data agreed with general conceptions of Finnish soil mineralogy but revealed novel details in the mineral composition. The relationship observed between soil textural and mineral compositions supports the current texture-based soil classification system and recommendations.
, Laxmi Prasad Joshi, Subarna Sharma, Prabha Adhikari, Barsha Koirala, Kumar Shrestha
Acta Agriculturae Scandinavica, Section B — Soil & Plant Science, Volume 72, pp 744-750;

Drought is a major abiotic factor causing rice yield loss in rainfed and drought-prone areas, so screening of the cultivars for drought tolerance is crucial. Our study screens 10 commercial rice cultivars grown in the mid-hills of Nepal and four pipeline genotypes. Our objective is to identify the superior drought-tolerant cultivar and suitable indices for screening. The 14 rice genotypes were evaluated under both drought stress and non-stress conditions in randomized complete block design with three replications. The yield reduction for the cultivars ranged from 12-54% during water-stressed conditions. The drought indices mean productivity, geometric mean productivity and stress tolerance index showed a positive and high correlation with grain yield. Based on drought indices, genotype NR 119 showed the highest mean productivity, geometric mean productivity, stress tolerance index and lowest yield loss. Further, principal component analysis bolsters our results by clustering similar drought indices and drought-tolerant cultivars. The NR 119 is followed by Chaite 5 and Chaite 4 as a drought-tolerant genotype, therefore, we recommend it for drought-prone areas of the mid-hill region of Nepal. We identified mean productivity, stress tolerance index and geometric mean productivity as important drought indices, so we recommend using this for drought screening.
, Gizem Bilgili
Acta Agriculturae Scandinavica, Section B — Soil & Plant Science, Volume 72, pp 733-743;

This study aimed to find the effects of several mycorrhiza species on agronomic characteristics and nutrient uptake of various sweet sorghum genotypes under the semi-arid Mediterranean soil conditions. Four sweet sorghum genotypes were inoculated with three mycorrhiza species under greenhouse conditions. The plants were evaluated for growth parameters such as shoot height, root length, root morphology (root surface, root diameter and volume), shoot and root dry weight, uptake of macro and micro mineral nutrients, root colonisation and mycorrhizal dependency. Mycorrhizal species significantly improved growth and productivity of sorghum genotypes. Inoculation of Funneliformis mosseae, Claroideoglomus claroideum and Claroideoglomus etunicatum resulted in the highest shoot and total dry matter biomass production in Ashana, Hereahri and Yellow genotypes, respectively. Mycorrhiza inoculated white genotype had higher root colonisation and root development, and shoot P, K, Ca and Mg contents. Yellow genotypes produced significantly higher shoot and total dry weight and also were highly mycorrhiza dependent among the four genotypes. Compared to the control treatment mycorrhizal inoculation increased shoot Zn concentration but had non-consistent effects on shoot Cu, Fe and Mn contents. Conclusively, our findings confirmed that sweet sorghum genotypes responded selectively to arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) colonisation for their growth parameters and nutrients uptake.
, , Albert Thembinkosi Modi, Zamalotshwa Thungo
Acta Agriculturae Scandinavica, Section B — Soil & Plant Science, Volume 72, pp 709-719;

The identification of high-yielding and stable genotypes for cultivation across differential production regions is among the key breeding objectives in cowpea improvement programs. This study was aimed to determine genotype-by-environment interaction (GEI) for grain yield to select high-yielding and stable cowpea genotypes for production in South Africa and identical agro-ecologies, and for cultivar development. Fifty cowpea genotypes were tested for grain yield across seven environments of South Africa using a 10 × 5 alpha lattice design replicated three times, during the 2019/2020 and 2020/2021 planting seasons. Grain yield data were subjected to analysis of variance (ANOVA), additive main effects and multiplicative interaction (AMMI) and the genotype-by-environment interaction (GGE) biplot analyses. ANOVA and AMMI showed significant genotype, environment and GEI effects. High grain yield was recorded for genotypes G35 (0.47 t ha−1), G1 (0.45 t ha−1) and G47 (0.43 t ha−1) across test environments. AMMI stability values (ASV); identified Acc-Cowp44 as the most stable genotype across all sites, recording the lowest ASV of 0.03. The comparison view of GGE biplot revealed Acc-Cowp29, Acc-Cowp38 and Acc-Cowp5 as ideal genotypes, possessing high grain yield of 0.19, 0.47 and 0.36 t ha−1, respectively. The identified genotypes are recommended for production and inclusion in subsequent breeding activities.
, Danijela M. Djunisijevic-Bojovic, Becko V. Kasalica, Marijana Milutinovic, Marija M. Petkovic-Benazzouz, , Ivan D. Belca, Mirjana Z. Sarvan,
Acta Agriculturae Scandinavica, Section B — Soil & Plant Science, Volume 72, pp 720-732;

Well-balanced nutrition is important for the successful cultivation of healthy plants. In this paper, we demonstrate a nondestructive optical method that can sense a deficiency of certain nutrients. The setup was tested on hydroponically grown Ocimum basilicum. The plants were subjected to nutrient deficiency by the exclusion of one of the essential elements (Fe, Mg, P, N) from the hydroponic solution. A control group of plants, fed by the balanced hydroponic solution, was also grown under the same conditions. The proposed method tracks and records the optical transmittance of the plants' leaves. All groups exhibit clearly defined day-night Circadian rhythms. When compared to the control group, the treated plants exhibited modified circadian rhythms of the optical transmission, suggesting an early indicator of the plants' stress. The condition of the plants under test was also assessed by the more common (destructive) methods such as: measurements of the determination of the photosynthetic pigment content, dray weight determination and the efficiency of PSII. Several biological parameters were observed, calculated and compared to the graphs of optical transmission dependence in real time. Presented results have demonstrated a significant potential of the proposed optical method for the early detection of plants' stress in hydroponic cultivation.
Elio Enrique Trujillo Marín, Chao Wang, Ashutus Singha, , , , Aminu Darma,
Acta Agriculturae Scandinavica, Section B - Soil & Plant Science, Volume 72, pp 700-708;

Under the current context of reducing chemical N input in agriculture, it is important to investigate better N allocation to different growth stages of crops. The plants were subjected to sufficient and reduced soil water regimes in interaction with two N application proportions applied at the vegetative and reproductive growth stages of tomato plants, respectively. In terms of the soil water impact, across the N proportion treatments, the reduced water treatments significantly decreased leaf and biomass growth by 33% and meanwhile remarkably reduced stomatal conductance of leaves, which significantly decreased water consumption by 41%. Consequently, plant WUE markedly decreased by 10.4%. The N uptake and fresh yield were considerably reduced by 37.5% and 39.3%, respectively. Regarding the N proportion effect across the soil water treatments, the lower N application of 30% at the vegetative growth stage significantly enhanced photosynthesis products allocated to fruits, which substantially improved the fresh yield by 32.9%. Furthermore, it significantly improved N accumulation by 9.0% compared to the higher N application of 70% at this stage. Conclusively, when given the certain amount of N supply, the N allocation should be reduced at the vegetative growth stage to achieve high yield and N uptake in tomato production .
, Chemeda Fininsa, , Berhanu Amsalu
Acta Agriculturae Scandinavica, Section B — Soil & Plant Science, Volume 72, pp 685-699;

Common bean is an important legume consumed as a source of food and used as a cash crop worldwide. However, its production and productivity are mainly constrained by bacterial and fungal diseases. A field survey was conducted to determine the prevalence, incidence, severity and association of factors influencing common bacterial blight (CBB) and anthracnose epidemics in major bean growing areas of Ethiopia, during 2019. In three regions within six zones from 12 districts, a total of 180 common bean fields were assessed for CBB and anthracnose. The results revealed that CBB and anthracnose were 100% prevalent though CBB was more severe than anthracnose. The logistic regression model showed CBB and anthracnose components were significantly associated with biophysical factors. High CBB incidence (>70%) at Ambo, Arsi-Negele and Shashemene-zuriya and high severity (>30%) at Ambo, Boricha and Shahsemene-zuriya were strongly associated with sole cropping, July sowing, poor weeding practices, maturity stage and own saved seeds. Anthracnose incidence of >50% and severity of >30% had high probabilities of associations with zones, sole cropping, own saved seeds, variety, poor weeding practices and maturity stages. The study indicated that CBB and anthracnose are severe and 100% prevalent in Ethiopia, and efforts should be done towards the usage of clean seeds, weeding practices, following appropriate sowing dates and other appropriate agronomic practices to manage the diseases.
, Bliss Gutukunhuwa, Arnold B. Mashingaidze, Edson Gandiwa
Acta Agriculturae Scandinavica, Section B - Soil & Plant Science, Volume 72, pp 673-684;

Earthworms are a major component of soil fauna communities with positive effects on soil chemical, biological and physical processes. A study was carried out to investigate the medium-term effects of cultural practices on earthworm communities in an agricultural field. Data were collected in the 2018/2019 cropping season from a six-year-old experiment with tillage system, fertiliser application rate and weeding intensity as the main, sub- and sub-subplots, respectively. Lumbricus (34.4%) and Diplocardia (38.3%) were the dominant genera, while endogeic earthworms (48.4%) dominated the community structure among other earthworm functional groups. Clean weeded plots under the basin planting system had higher Lumbricus abundance (quadruple), genus richness (76.4%) and Shannon diversity index (56.0%) than all other treatments. Inorganic fertiliser application in the conventional tillage system reduced Eisenia abundance and genus evenness by 100.0% and 73.3%, respectively. These results suggest that in minimum tillage systems, frequent hand weeding confers positive effects on earthworms including increased abundance. In conventional tillage systems, application of high doses of inorganic fertiliser is detrimental to earthworm communities. Further studies need to focus on identifying the most sustainable and cost-effective hand weeding frequency for enhanced earthworm diversity and increased crop productivity.
, Trond Maukon Henriksen, Torfinn Torp, Audun Korsaeth
Acta Agriculturae Scandinavica, Section B - Soil & Plant Science, Volume 72, pp 648-659;

Soil organic carbon (SOC) was studied at 0–45 cm depth after 28 years of cropping with arable and mixed dairy rotations on a soil with an initial SOC level of 2.6% at 0–30 cm. Measurements included both carbon concentration (SOC%) and soil bulk density (BD). Gross C input was calculated from yields. Averaged over all systems, topsoil SOC% declined significantly (−0.20% at 0–15 cm, p = 0.04, −0.39% at 15–30 cm, p = 0.05), but changed little at 30–45 cm (+0.11%, p = 0.15). Declines in topsoil SOC% tended to be greater in arable systems than in mixed dairy systems. Changes in BD were negatively related to those in SOC%, emphasizing the need to measure both when assessing SOC stocks. The overall SOC mass at 0–45 cm declined significantly from 98 to 89 Mg ha−1, representing a loss of 0.3% yr−1 of the initial SOC. Variability within systems was high, but arable cropping showed tendencies of high SOC losses, whilst SOC stocks appeared to be little changed in conventional mixed dairy with 50% ley and organic mixed dairy with 75% ley. The changes were related to the level of C input. Mean C input was 22% higher in mixed dairy than in arable systems.
Acta Agriculturae Scandinavica, Section B - Soil & Plant Science, Volume 72, pp 660-672;

Sorghum (Sorghum bicolo [L.] Moench) production has considerable socio-economic values in sub-Saharan Africa for food security and to serve the increased industrial demands due to high population pressure and climate change. However, the production and productivity of the crop are yet to be expounded in Nigeria for economic gains. Therefore, the objective of this study was to present the current opportunities and constraints to sorghum production in Nigeria. A participatory rural appraisal (PRA) study was conducted in three selected sorghum growing zones in northern Nigeria involving 250 farmers. Socio-economic data were collected through surveys and focus group discussions. Sorghum was cultivated mainly by males (80%) who had grade 6-12 level of education (31.3%), with the productive age of 21-45 years (75.7%) and a household family size of below five members (52.3%). Low yielding landrace varieties such as Kaura (37.4%) and Fara-fara (29.3%) were the most widely cultivated types across the study zones due to their good grain quality. The major farmers' preferred traits from a sorghum variety were high yield, drought tolerance and Striga resistance. The study recommends integrated sorghum technology development incorporating the described preferences of the farmers for sustainable production and economic gains of the cropble production.
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