9 June 2020
Seeds and deeds

Collective plant breeding for reduced input farming

23 June 2020
NFU virtual organic farm walk

Challenges of net zero



29 May 2020
iSAGE Toolbox - How to design it step by step

Safeguard farmers' decision making tool

29 May 2020
Innovative network for promoting pulses as novel protein sources

Case study of the British fava bean food value chain



29 April 2020
Tim Bennett is the new Chair of ORC

Former NFU president takes on chairmanship of Organic Research Centre

Impacts of organic silvoarable systems on pest and disease distribution – Sheepdrove Organic Farm, Berkshire

Contract period:

1 March 2010 to 28 August 2010

Main funder:

University of Reading/ORC

Contact staff at ORC:

Jo Smith

Project aims

Tom Pinkham, an MSc student from University of Reading, worked with us on his research thesis to investigate the influence of tree rows on an ecosystem service - pest and disease control. He measured the influence of tree/hedgerow strips on microclimate and soil characteristics at various distances from the tree rows into the middle of the crop alleys, and in a neighbouring open field. Assessments of major pests and/or diseases, and crop assessments, were carried out in the crop alleys and compared with levels in monocropped fields. Analyses identified higher air temperatures, moister soils, and lower wind speeds when compared to control system. Weed cover was 7% higher in the agroforestry system, and aphids and Ramularia were also higher in the agroforestry crop. However, there was no significant difference in crop damage levels between the agroforestry system and control field.

ORC's role

Supervisory