Research visit at Stellenbosch University

Water use efficient agricultural landscapes The reduction of the crop water use is important for sustainable agriculture in South Africa. In cooperation with the University of Stellenbosch we  investigate the impact of tree plantations on the evapotranspiration in a vineyard in the Cape Winelands. After one year of continuous recording of microclimatic data, we are now …

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Spatial variance of photosynthesis of biological soil crusts

Photosynthetic characteristics and their spatial variance of biological soil crusts covering initial soils of post-mining sites in Lower Lusatia, NE Germany Following surface disturbance, quaternary sands are the basic substrate for soil development in the Lusatian reclamation area. These substrates mostly contain low organic matter and, hence, are nutrient poor. Accumulation of soil carbon is an …

Influence of biocrusts succession on soil hydrology

Infiltration and water retention of biological soil crusts on reclaimed soils of former open-cast lignite mining sites in Brandenburg, north-east Germany Investigations were done on two former open-cast lignite mining sites under reclamation, an artificial sand dune in Welzow Süd, and a forest plantation in Schlabendorf Süd (Brandenburg, Germany). The aim was to associate the …

Roots – the hidden half ? – A new minirhizotron system

The root systems of plants play an important part in the carbon allocation and for the uptake of nutrients and water. However, research on plant root systems under field conditions is difficult, because the soil limits the direct observation. The minirhizotron method, in contrast to destructive methods, permits the measurement of the fine root production, …

Ecophysiological investigations in dry forests

Green barks of trees from drought deciduous forests (“bosque seco”) in northern Peru/southern Ecuador do not perform CAM Trees from drought deciduous forests (“bosque seco”) in northern Peru and southern Ecuador regularly shed their leaves at the onset of seven months-long periods without rain. This way they very effectively reduce the bulk water consumption by …

Biological nitrogen fixation of black locust

Carbon allocation, nodulation, and biological nitrogen fixation of black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia L.) under soil water limitation The pioneer tree black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia L.) is a drought-resistant tree and, in symbiosis with Rhizobium, able to fix dinitrogen from the atmosphere. It is, therefore, an interesting species for marginal lands where soil amelioration is sought …

Growth and plant water status of black locust

Spatial and temporal variation of drought impact on black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia L.) water status and growth Stimulated by the rising demand for bioenergy, forestry practices for energy production are of increasing importance worldwide. Black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia L.) is a suitable tree species for biomass production in short-rotation plantations in East Germany, especially on …

Photosynthesis and growth of knotweed

Effects of nitrogen and phosphate fertilization on leaf nutrient content, photosynthesis, and growth of the novel bioenergy crop Fallopia sachalinensis cv. ‘Igniscum Candy‘ The aim of the study was to determine the effects of nitrogen and phosphate fertilization on the growth performance of the novel bioenergy crop Fallopia sachalliensis cv. ‘Igniscum Candy’ (Polygonaceae). In a …