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Straw Residue Helps Keep Nitrogen on the Farm

Posted: June 3, 2010

Using cover crops to prevent nitrogen leaching into waterways and reduce soil erosion; future research points to integration of legume cover crops with synthetic fertilizer.

One way to possibly minimize these losses may be to add more carbon to nitrogen-rich residues, such as those of cereal grain crops, during cover crop phase of the cropping systems. A research study conducted by Anna Starovoytov at Penn State evaluated the potential for straw residue to retain legume-derived nitrogen in a corn cropping system.