Constraints using the liquid fraction from roadside grass as a bio-based fertilizer

Journal article


Rintoul-Hynes, N., Scott, H., Meers, E. and Fernandes de Souza, M. 2023. Constraints using the liquid fraction from roadside grass as a bio-based fertilizer. Journal of Plant Nutrition and Soil Science. https://doi.org/10.1002/jpln.202200308
AuthorsRintoul-Hynes, N., Scott, H., Meers, E. and Fernandes de Souza, M.
Abstract

Background
Roadside grass cuttings are currently considered a waste product due to their association with road sweepings as contaminated waste, therefore, their potential as a biofertilizer is understudied.

Aim
This study aimed to determine whether grass liquid fraction (GLF) collected from a roadside verge in Maldegem, Belgium, and pressed using a screw press was suitable as a biofertilizer.

Methods
The characterization of the heavy metal content of the GLF was conducted using an ICP-OES. From May to September 2019, a pot experiment was set up using a randomized block design to compare tomato plant growth, yield, and nutrition for GLF-treated plants to two commercial fertilizers and tap water as a control.

Results
The heavy metal content of the GLF was below the maximum permissible concentrations (MPCs) for organic fertilizers as set out by the European Comission fertilizer regulation 1069/2009 and 1107/2009 (European Comission, 2019). However, despite having a fairly well-balanced nutrient content (0.1% N, 0.04% P2O5, and 0.2% K2O), GLF had a negative effect on the growth, root weight, and yield of the tomato plants, killing six out of ten plants. GLF also promoted mold growth in the soil of some plants. Since the GLF was uncontaminated, heavy metal toxicity did not cause the negative effect.

Conclusions
Previous research showed that liquid fractions from some plants negatively affect the growth of others due to allelopathic chemicals; this, together with the stimulation of fungal growth, could have caused the negative effects observed. Future experiments will investigate the herbicidal property of GLF and possible treatments to potentially recover the nutrients contained within the GLF for application as a biofertilizer.

KeywordsAllelopathy; Biofertilizer; Circular economy; Microbiota; Tomato
Year2023
JournalJournal of Plant Nutrition and Soil Science
PublisherWiley
ISSN1436-8730
1522-2624
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1002/jpln.202200308
Official URLhttps://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/jpln.202200308
FunderInterreg 2 Seas programme 2014−2020
European Regional Development Fund. Grant Number: 2S03−042
Province of West Flanders; by the Province of East Flanders
Canterbury Christ Church University
Publication dates
Print27 Apr 2023
Publication process dates
Accepted07 Apr 2023
Deposited10 May 2023
Publisher's version
License
File Access Level
Open
Output statusPublished
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