24 Dec 2010

Research Highlight - Brazil

Research Highlight - Brazil

In Brazil, continuous cultivation of lands under the same monocropping systems tends to promote soil degradation and increase the incidence of crop diseases, pests, and weeds, which in turn reduces crop yield potential. As an example of on-going research, the project on Sustainable Production Systems under No-Till in the Cerrado of Brazil is a long-term study looking into various aspects of sustainable agricultural systems.

The project gives emphasis to crop rotation and other alternatives to generating long-term profitability. This is believed to be instrumental to many farms located throughout the Brazilian Cerrado. Part of this project is dedicated to the study of soil fertility management under these sustainable agriculture systems. Two experiments, one aiming at the production of fiber and the other at grain production, each containing seven different cropping systems, were initiated in 2008 and general results for the first year are now available.

Results initially suggest the production of dry matter yield in cover crops during the spring, before cotton, is sufficient to guarantee good soil protection and recycling of nutrients. Amounts of N, P, Ca, Mg, and S recycled by millet and Brachiaria grass were identical, while the amount of K recycled was higher for systems utilizing Brachiaria in the autumn and millet in the spring. The type of cover crop utilized during the spring did not influence cotton yield. The crop intensification system of producing soybean and corn (second crop) in sequence resulted in higher amounts of nutrient export, which should be taken into consideration when planning fertilizer recommendations. This is a long-term project and valuable and more conclusive results will be possible with time. Brazil-53

Project Details
Leader: Dr. Eros A. B. Francisco, Research Foundation MT, Avenida Antônio Teixeira dos Santos, 1559, Rondonopolis, MT 78750-000. E-mail: erosfrancisco@fundacaomt.com.br
Cooperators: Dr. Ciro Rosolem, rosolem@fca.unesp.br and Leandro Zancanaro, leandrozancanaro@fundacaomt.com.br

More on Brazil-53

Full list of Brazilian research supported by IPNI

IPNI's strategic goal of facilitating research on environmentally responsible use of plant nutrients needed for agriculture to meet future global demand for food, feed, fiber, and fuel is accomplished through partnerships with colleges, universities, government agencies, and other institutions and organizations around the world where IPNI Programs are established.