Submitted to: Biocycle
Publication Type: Other
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/15/2003
Publication Date: 8/15/2003
Citation: Banuelos, G.S., Pasakdee, S. 2003. Effect of organic fertilizers on vegetable production. Biocycle. August 2003, pp 63-64. Interpretive Summary: Production of high cash value organically grown vegetables, such as broccoli is becoming one of the fastest growing segments of irrigated agriculture in California. Scientific data are badly lacking in the timely development of creating organic nutrient reservoirs that are essential for crop productivity and for sustainability of the soil and water environment. Different water applications, soils, temperatures, and compost quality provide varied conditions for different rates of decomposition and thus nutrient availability varies. Results obtained from this project will provide information to organic vegetable growers for safely using composts and water management strategies that increase profitability and environmental soundness of growing broccoli in California.
Technical Abstract: Organic vegetable production has special nutrient requirements that far exceed those of conventional farms. Composts and other soil amendments used in organic agriculture have an abundance of nitrogen and other nutrients. Nutrient release is, however, often difficult to control in organic systems. The WMRL will quantify transformation, distribution, movement, uptake of organic sources of nutrients (e.g., nitrate applied as compost and side dress amendments of Phytamin and fish powder) by broccoli and examine the impact of water management on nutrient availability. Results of this project will provide farmers with important information for increasing the profitability and reducing the environmental risks of producing organically-grown broccoli.