Two methods are used in Switzerland to optimise the nitrogen fertilisation of field crops: the «corrected norms» method and the Nmin method. Each of the methods suggests a different approach: the «corrected norms» method takes into account field characteristics influencing nitrogen availability, while the Nmin method is based on the measurement of mineral nitrogen present in the soil during periods that are crucial for the plants growth. In this article, both methods are evaluated using nitrogen fertilisation experiments performed by Agroscope for a wide range of arable crops and pedoclimatic conditions. The advantages and limits of each method are presented, and ways for improvement are suggested.
Spring J.-L-, Zufferey V., Verdenal T., Reynard J.-S., Lorenzini F., Bourdin G., Blouin A., Carlen C., Jermini M., Morisoli R., Ferretti M.
Five Merlot clones bred in Switzerland are currently being distributed by the certification sector. A multiyear trial conducted by Agroscope in Gudo (Canton of Ticino) has made it possible to compare them with French and Italian reference clones and to highlight their very good performances.
Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi are important for healthy soils and crops. A pan-European study shows that plant-protection products adversely affect these fungi, reducing their ability to supply plants with phosphorus via their roots.
Birdsfoot trefoil and sainfoin are used in mixtures for perennial hay meadows and for tannin-containing fodder. Agroscope is adding two new cultivars of birdsfoot trefoil to the ‘List of Recommended Varieties of Forage Plants’, whilst there is no change in the case of sainfoin.