Universität Bonn

INRES Crop Science

Modelling nutrient acquisition by crops with specific consideration of biopores


The central hypothesis of the project is that the simulation of nutrient acquisition by crops from the subsoil has to take into account not only crop types with their specific root system, but also soil structure and in particular biopores. We hypothesize that the consideration of the effects of biopore density and quality as well as soil water status on nutrient turnover and accessibility in the subsoil will improve the dynamic simulation modelling of nutrient acquisition by crops at the field scale providing a better basis for improving agronomic management and crops in the future. Specific emphasis is on the acquisition of N and P in interaction with soil moisture conditions and nutrient demand. Using a two-compartment approach, the project develops specific submodels within the modelling framework SIMPLACE for the turnover and uptake of N and P within the soil matrix as well as in the soil biopores. In addition, findings and algorithms regarding the influence of biopore properties, root architecture and nutrient uptake from a higher resolution 3D root growth model running at the Research Center Jülich will be considered in the development of the field scale model solution.

Persons in charge

Dr. Thomas Gaiser


2014 - 2017


Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG), Paketantrag PAK888

Cooperating partners

The projects belongs to a consortium which includes the Institute for Organic Farming, the Institute for Crop Science and Resource Conservation (University of Bonn), the Department of Soil Science (University of Kassel), Department of Soil Science of Temperate Ecosystems (University of Göttingen) and the Research Center Jülich.


Gaiser, T., J. Vanderborght, M. Javaux, F. Ewert, 2012. Modelling phosphorus acquisition from the sub-soil for different crops with specific consideration of bio-pores. Proceedings of the European Soil Science Conference, 2-7 July 2012, Bari, Italy.

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