Yield levels and optimal fertilization close to field edges

Last changed: 16 February 2024
drone photo over arable field

In Sweden, more than one fourth of the cropland area is within 20 meters of a field edge, yet we know very little about crop growth conditions and optimal fertilization in field margins – yield mapping by combines or satellites are less reliable there, and soil sampling is seldom done. This one-year pilot project aims to increase our knowledge of soil properties and yields (and thus suitable fertilizer rates) in border zones vs. the rest of the field.

To explore yield levels and crop growth conditions near different types of field edges, we will set up 16 observation transects in winter wheat. Crop yield will be mapped by drone-based remote sensing and soil properties will be determined in the lab.  Is there reason to adapt fertilizer rates along boundaries?

The project runs for one year, starting in spring 2024. it is financed by Swedish farmers’ foundation for agricultural research together with SLU, and is carried out within the framework of the Laboratory for agricultural decision support systems (LADS).


Project name: Is a quarter of the arable land fertilized blindly?
Budget: 1.1 MSEK
Funder: Swedish farmers’ foundation for agricultural research (project: R-23-33-895) and SLU
Planned project period: 2024-2025


Kristin Persson
Department of soil and environment, SLU
kristin.persson@slu.se, +46 511-67222