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Facilitative root interactions in intercrops

Hauggaard-Nielsen, Henrik and Jensen, Erik Steen (2005) Facilitative root interactions in intercrops. Plant and Soil, 4, pp. 237-250.

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Facilitation takes place when plants ameliorate the environment of their neighbours, and increase their growth and survival. Facilitation occurs in natural ecosystems as well as in agroecosystems. We discuss examples of facilitative root interactions in intercropped agroecosystems; including nitrogen transfer between legumes and non-leguminous plants, exploitation of the soil via mycorrhizal fungi and soil-plant processes which alter the mobilisation of plant growth resources such as through exudation of amino acids, extra-cellular enzymes, acidification, competition-induced modification of root architecture, exudation of growth stimulating substances, and biofumigation. Facilitative root interactions are most likely to be of importance in nutrient poor soils and in low-input agroecosystems due to critical interspecific competition for plant growth factors. However, studies from more intensified cropping systems using chemical and mechanical inputs also show that facilitative interactions definitely can be of significance. It is concluded that a better understanding of the mechanisms behind facilitative interactions may allow us to benefit more from these phenomena in agriculture and environmental management.

EPrint Type:Journal paper
Keywords:Exudation, facilitation, intercrop, isotope methodology, mycorrhiza, root system
Subjects: Crop husbandry > Crop combinations and interactions
Research affiliation: Denmark > DARCOF II (2000-2005) > I. 5 (GENESIS) Production of grain legumes and cereals for animal feed
Related Links:http://ipsapp007.kluweronline.com/ips/frames/toc.aspx?J=5083&S=106132&M=50536&ADS=0&I=147&N=toc
Deposited By: Hauggaard-Nielsen, Senior Scientist, phD, Cand. agro Henrik
ID Code:4054
Deposited On:08 Dec 2004
Last Modified:02 Aug 2012 10:54
Document Language:English
Refereed:Peer-reviewed and accepted

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