Modelling the Interactions of Soils, Climate, and Management for Grass Production in England and Wales

Michail L. Giannitsopoulos*, Paul Burgess, Goetz M Richter, Matt J Bell, CFE Topp, Julie Ingram, Taro Takahashi

*Corresponding author for this work

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Abstract

This study examines the effectiveness of a model called LINGRA-N-Plus to simulate the interaction of climate, soil and management on the green leaf and total dry matter yields of ryegrass in England and Wales. The LINGRA-N-Plus model includes modifications of the LINGRA-N model such as temperature- and moisture-dependent soil nitrogen mineralization and differential partitioning to leaves and stems with thermal time from the last harvest. The resulting model was calibrated against the green leaf and total grass yields from a harvest interval x nitrogen application experiment described by Wilman et al. (1976). When the LINGRA-N-Plus model was validated against total grass yields from nitrogen experiments at ten sites described by Morrison et al. (1980), its modelling efficiency improved greatly compared to the original LINGRA-N. High predicted yields, at zero nitrogen application, were related to soils with a high initial nitrogen content. The lowest predicted yields occurred at sites with low rainfall and shallow rooting depth; mitigating the effect of drought at such sites increased yields by up to 4 t ha−1. The results highlight the usefulness of grass
models, such as LINGRA-N-Plus, to explore the combined effects of climate, soil, and management, like nitrogen application, and harvest intervals on grass productivity.
Original languageEnglish
Article number677
Number of pages21
JournalAgronomy
Volume11
Early online date2 Apr 2021
DOIs
Publication statusFirst published - 2 Apr 2021

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