Plants & GHGs

The NZAGRC’s former nitrous oxide and soil carbon work streams were combined into one programme this year. This ensures a strong overall framework, closer communication and full GHG analyses across the programme. The programme focusses on three key areas:

1. Identifying and prioritising plant traits for low GHG emissions;

2. Mitigation practices to maintain soil carbon and reduce nitrous oxide emissions at paddock scale; and

3. Defining the achievable soil carbon stabilisation capacity of New Zealand grassland soils.

Current progress and research stories

Assessment of the application of gibberellins to increase productivity and reduce nitrous oxide emissions in grazed grassland

Emissions of nitrous oxide from grassland systems are attributable largely to the use of nitrogen fertilisers and the excreta deposited by grazing animals.

There is increasing interest in using gibberellins as a naturally-occurring growth promotant of herbage to reduce the use of nitrogen fertilisers while leading to similar or greater increases in dry matter.

In a study commissioned by the NZAGRC and carried out by Landcare Research, the conslusion reached is that the use of gibberellins with reduced addition of nitrogen fertiliser has the potential to reduce nitrous emissions from grazed grassland. However, acceptance of widespread use of gibberellins will be dependent on cost benefit analysis for farmers.

Download the In Press publication

  1. pdf NZAGRC_LCR_Gibberellins Review 2015.pdf (0.34MB)

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