Rooting of permanent grassland in relation to build-up of soil organic matter for climate mitigation

Goaitske Iepema, Joachim G.C. Deru, N.J. Hoekstra, Nick J.M. van Eekeren. 2016. Rooting of permanent grassland in relation to build-up of soil organic matter for climate mitigation. EGF 2016: 26th EGF General Meeting on "The Multiple Roles of Grassland in the European Bioeconomy". European Grassland Federation EGF, Trondheim, Norway. 21
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Taal van het document: Engels
Abstract / summary in English:

Improved grassland rooting can have a positive effect on carbon sequestration. In our study we measured the root biomass and soil organic matter (SOM) of ten ‘young’ (<13 years) and ten ‘old’ (>18 years) grasslands on ten dairy farms on marine clay (fluvisol) in the north of the Netherlands. The aim of the study was to investigate the range of rooting in existing permanent grasslands in relation to grassland age and SOM build-up. The root biomass of the twenty permanent grasslands varied between 4.3 and 15.7 ton ash-free dry matter ha-1. There was no significant difference in root biomass between old and young grasslands. SOM in the soil layer 0-10 cm was significantly higher in old grasslands and correlated positively with root biomass in 0-10 cm in old grasslands. By a theoretical calculation, we confirmed the possible long-term causality of measured differences in root biomass and SOM in old grasslands.

Keywords in English: permanent grassland, grass rooting, root biomass, soil organic matter, climate mitigation