Journal article
Growth responses of garden cress (Lepidium sativum L.) to biodynamic cow manure preparation in a bioassay



Publication Details
Authors:
Morau, A.; Piepho, H.; Fritz, J.
Publication year:
2019
Journal:
Biological Agriculture and Horticulture
Pages range:
1-19
Volume number:
2019
ISSN:
0144-8765

Abstract

Natural substances are extensively used as biostimulants in agriculture.
Notably, horn-manure preparation (HMP) is fermented cow manure sprayed
at low concentrations onto biodynamically cultivated fields. The present
study investigated the effect of HMP on the growth of garden cress (Lepidium sativum L.) cultivated in a bioassay (randomized block design, n
= 20). Seedlings were cultivated in a water medium. Treatments of a
drop of HMP suspension (1 µl or 0.1 µl) or of water (Control) were added
to the medium. Long-term series of trials, with two different HMPs,
were conducted over 18 and 9 months with 76 and 38 trials, respectively.
In the first series, the effect of a 1 µl drop of HMP suspension on
root growth was significant overall (−2.4%, p = 0.004, Tukey-Kramer-test) and in 35.5% of the individual trials (p
< 0.05). However, the effects fluctuated strongly between the trials
(from −25.7% to +19.1%). The effect of a 0.1 µl drop was similar, but
lower in magnitude. The results of the second series were analogous.
Comparison of statistical models provided significant evidence of a
growth-stabilising effect. An additional series of 22 negative control
trials indicated an acceptable false positive rate. It was concluded
that HMP, at low doses, significantly influenced root growth at early
stages, with a stabilising pattern of action. Further development of the
bioassay should improve its power and stability over time. A
stabilising effect may induce an increased resilience of the
agricultural system.



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Last updated on 2019-12-12 at 11:40

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