Diversivall – More productive and resilient leys through increased plant diversity

Last changed: 14 February 2024
A forage crop containing different forage species.

This project is about making forage crops more productive and resilient by increasing biodiversity.

Leys are the driving force behind ruminant production in Sweden. Research in Nordic countries provides strong evidence that leys which contain a greater number of species can be more productive, have more stable yield, and are more resistant to weed invasion and environmental stress.

Ley cultivar testing focuses on single species, sown in small plots. In contrast, seed is sold as mixtures, often with few species. This project will compare the agronomic performance of selected commercial seed mixtures, and determine whether outcomes are improved when mixtures are augmented with additional species, including species not commonly used (WP1).

Less commonly used species will be assessed in more detail for their nutritive value and greenhouse gas emissions (WP2). The process will involve a range of farmers and other stakeholders who will contribute to the experimental design process, and onfarm demonstrations will provide a platform for participation and dissemination (WP3).

The project is funded by the Swedish Farmers’ Foundation for Agricultural Research (Stiftelsen Lantbruksforskning; SLF)

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David Parsons, Professor
Department of Crop Production Ecology, Crop production science
david.parsons@slu.se, 090-786 87 14