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Calcium cyanamide - a synoptic review of an environmentally benign fertiliser which enhances soil health

Dixon, G. R. (2012) Calcium cyanamide - a synoptic review of an environmentally benign fertiliser which enhances soil health. Acta Horticulturae, 938. pp. 211-217. ISSN 0567-7572

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Abstract/Summary

Abstract Calcium cyanamide was the first artificial nitrogen fertiliser to be manufactured industrially. It contains approximately 20% nitrogen and 50% calcium and is an environmentally benign way of providing these nutrients for field and protected crops. This fertiliser’s properties are reviewed in this paper; these include:- a gradual release of nitrogen, hence the rhizosphere remains in harmony with the requirements of plant roots; leaching and demineralisation are minimal, as a consequence nitrate pollution is limited; the combination of nitrogen and calcium raises the efficiency of fertiliser applications reducing the carbon-footprint of farming operations while at the same time increasing crop yields and quality; soil health is improved as a result of increasing microbial diversity and this helps to suppress the effects of soil borne pathogens. The use of calcium cyanamide is set into the context of needs for increasing food production, reducing the intensity with which resources are used, enhancing natural biodiversity and providing for environmental sustainability.

Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Life Sciences > School of Agriculture, Policy and Development > Biodiversity, Crops and Agroecosystems Division > Crops Research Group
ID Code:65585
Publisher:International Society for Horticultural Science

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