Changes in productivity of grassland with ageing

M. Hoogerkamp

    Research output: Thesisexternal PhD, WU


    <p/>The productivity of grassland may change greatly with ageing. Frequently, a productive ley period, occurring in the first time after (re)seeding, is followed by a period in which productivity decreases. Under conditions favourable to grassland this may be temporary. A production level finally can be attained almost equalling that of young reseeded grassland, but mostly not that of liberally fertilized grassland sown in arable crop soil.<p/>Especially changes in organic matter content in the soil, activity of the earthworm population, the occurrence of "soil sickness" and an insufficient longevity of the sown species can be involved.<p/>Grassland with a high clover percentage in the sward may react differently to these changes than grassland with a low clover content. In the present research usually no clovers were sown.<p/>A decrease in the organic matter content of the soil had a negative effect on productivity; this negative influence was evident almost from sowing onwards, decreased gradually and asymptotically with ageing and could be compensated for the most part by N fertilizing.<p/>Sowing grass in an arable crop soil, with a liberal N dressing resulted in more productive grassland than reseeding. This difference in productivity ,was only temporary.<p/>A low earthworm population caused mat formation, an unfavourable physical condition and a lower gross yield.<p/>Disappearance of the sown grass species and varieties may result in a decreasing productivity.
    Original languageEnglish
    QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
    Awarding Institution
    • 't Hart, M.L., Promotor
    Award date6 Apr 1984
    Place of PublicationWageningen
    Publication statusPublished - 1984


    • grasslands
    • netherlands
    • yield increases
    • yield losses
    • yields

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