Soil Fertility and Biodiversity in Organic Farming

  title={Soil Fertility and Biodiversity in Organic Farming},
  author={Paul F. Maeder and Andreas Fliessbach and David Dubois and Lucie Gunst and Padruot Men Fried and Urs A. Niggli},
  pages={1694 - 1697}
An understanding of agroecosystems is key to determining effective farming systems. Here we report results from a 21-year study of agronomic and ecological performance of biodynamic, bioorganic, and conventional farming systems in Central Europe. We found crop yields to be 20% lower in the organic systems, although input of fertilizer and energy was reduced by 34 to 53% and pesticide input by 97%. Enhanced soil fertility and higher biodiversity found in organic plots may render these systems… 

Organic Soil Management: Impacts on Yields, Soil Quality and Economics

Understanding organic management practices is a key in developing sustainable organic farming systems. We report the results of four different organic fertilization strategies in a field trial on

Organic Agriculture and Biodiversity

Organic farming produces clear benefits for biodiversity in comparison to conventional farming. Depending on altitude, organic farms have between 46 and 72 percent more semi-natural habitats and host

Plant Diseases and Management Approaches in Organic Farming Systems.

Crop-loss assessment relating productivity to all yield-forming and -reducing factors would benefit organic production and sustainability evaluation.

Soil Quality and Productivity in Organic Farming in Context of Nepal: A Review

Soil of organic farms has been found with more biological diversity and microbial activity than the conventional farming system. Majorly organic farming has enhanced the biological soil quality

Soils Suppressing Biodiversity

Soil biodiversity has been shown essential to provide ecosystem services for plant growth that have large economic value. However a number of ecosystem management practices and the effects of

Effects of increasing fertilization in organic farming fodder cultivation and market crop systems

In 1992, on experimental stations of the Saxony State Institute of Agriculture, two organic field trials were set up on loamy sand and a loess loam in western Saxony, eastern Germany. In these

Biomass and bioenergy production in organic agriculture. Consequences for soil fertility, environment, spread of animal parasites and socio-economy. BioConcnes, a 4-year interdisciplinary project.

Energy production and energy use in organic agriculture (OA) need to be addressed in order to reduce the reliance on non-renewable fossil fuels and minimize greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Thus,



Soil phosphorus dynamics in cropping systems managed according to conventional and biological agricultural methods

The effects of conventional and biological farming systems on soil P dynamics were studied by measuring some microbiological parameters after 13 years of different cropping systems. The treatments

Legume-based cropping systems have reduced carbon and nitrogen losses

In agricultural systems, optimization of carbon and nitrogen cycling through soil organic matter can improve soil fertility and yields while reducing negative environmental impact. A basic tenet that

Arbuscular mycorrhizae in a long-term field trial comparing low-input (organic, biological) and high-input (conventional) farming systems in a crop rotation

Soils from the low-input farming systems had a greatly enhanced capacity to initiate AM symbiosis, although the relative differences in this capacity remained similar when propagules of the AM fungus Glomus mosseae were experimentally added to the soils, although overall root colonization by AM fungi was 2.8 times higher.

Microbiological processes in soil organic phosphorus transformations in conventional and biological cropping systems

Remains of residual organic P remaining in the soil at the end of the sequential fractionation procedure showed that the biodynamic treatment led to a modification of the composition of organic P, indicating that chemically resistant organic P participates in short-term accumulation and mineralization processes.

Global environmental impacts of agricultural expansion: the need for sustainable and efficient practices.

  • D. Tilman
  • Medicine, Environmental Science
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
  • 1999
The anticipated next doubling of global food production would be associated with approximately 3-fold increases in nitrogen and phosphorus fertilization rates, a doubling of the irrigated land area, and an 18% increase in cropland, which would have dramatic impacts on the diversity, composition, and functioning of the remaining natural ecosystems.

Environmental and Economic Costs of Soil Erosion and Conservation Benefits

With the addition of a quarter of a million people each day, the world population's food demand is increasing at a time when per capita food productivity is beginning to decline.

Sustainability of three apple production systems

Escalating production costs, heavy reliance on non-renewable resources, reduced biodiversity, water contamination, chemical residues in food, soil degradation and health risks to farm workers