Paulsen, H M; Schochow, M; Ulber, B; Kuhne, S and Rahmann, G (2006) Mixed cropping systems for control of weeds and pests in organic oilseed crops. In: Atkinson, C; Ball, B; Davies, D H K; Rees, R; Russell, G; Stockdale, E A; Watson, C A; Walker, R and Younie, D (Eds.) Aspects of Applied Biology 79, What will organic farming deliver? COR 2006, Association of Applied Biologists, pp. 215-219.
Agricultural advantages of mixed cropping are gained from biological effects like light competition offering weed-suppressing capacities, or by diversification of plant covers to break development cycles of pests. These effects were measured in a two-year project on mixed cropping with organic oilseed crops. It was found that weeds can be efficiently suppressed in organic linseed (Linum usitatissivum) grown in combination with wheat (Triticum aestivum) or false flax (Camelina sativa). Linseed growth was, however, impaired. In organic pea production (Pisum sativum) also, growing the crop as a mixture with false flax led to a significant decrease of weed population. Either culture showed a balanced plant development. In winter rape (Brassica napus) there were suggestions that infestation by insect pests can be directly reduced in mixtures with cereals or legumes and that parasitoids of insect pests are supported.
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