Reilly K.,Teagasc |
Cullen E.,Teagasc |
Cullen E.,University of Wisconsin - Madison |
Lola-Luz T.,Teagasc |
And 8 more authors.
Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture | Year: 2013
BACKGROUND: Responses of the soil microbial and nematode community to organic and conventional agricultural practices were studied using the Teagasc Kinsealy Systems Comparison trial as the experimental system. The trial is a long-term field experiment which divides conventional and organic agriculture into component pest-control and soil treatment practices. We hypothesised that management practices would affect soil ecology and used community level physiological profiles, microbial and nematode counts, and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) to characterise soil microbial communities in plots used for onion (Allium cepa L.) cultivation. RESULTS: Microbial activity and culturable bacterial counts were significantly higher under fully organic management. Culturable fungi, actinomycete and nematode counts showed a consistent trend towards higher numbers under fully organic management but these data were not statistically significant. No differences were found in the fungal/bacterial ratio. DGGE banding patterns and sequencing of excised bands showed clear differences between treatments. Putative onion fungal pathogens were predominantly sequenced under conventional soil treatment practices whilst putative soil suppressive bacterial species were predominantly sequenced from the organic pest-control treatment plots. CONCLUSION: Organic management increased microbial activity and diversity. Sequence data was indicative of differences in functional groups and warrants further investigation. © 2013 Society of Chemical Industry.
Reilly K.,TFRCA |
Reilly K.,Teagasc |
Valverde J.,TFRCA |
Finn L.,Teagasc |
And 6 more authors.
Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture | Year: 2014
BACKGROUND: Variety and crop management strategies affect the content of bioactive compounds (phenolics, flavonoids and glucosinolates) in green broccoli (calabrese) types, which are cultivated during summer and autumn in temperate European climates. Sprouting broccoli types are morphologically distinct and are grown over the winter season and harvested until early spring. Thus they show considerable potential for development as an import substitution crop for growers and consumers during the 'hungry gap' of early spring. The present study investigated the effect of variety and management practices on phytochemical content in a range of sprouting broccoli varieties. RESULTS: Yields were significantly higher in white sprouting broccoli varieties. Levels of phenolics and flavonoids were in the range 81.64-297.65 and 16.95-104.80 mg 100 g-1 fresh weight, respectively, depending on year and cultivar, and were highest in variety 'TZ 5052' in both years. In-row spacing did not affect flavonoid content. Phenolic and flavonoid content generally increased with increasing floret maturity and levels were high in edible portions of the crop. Crop wastes (leaf and flower) contained 145.9-239.3 and 21.5-116.6 mg 100 g-1 fresh weight total phenolics and flavonoids, respectively, depending on cultivar, tissue and year. Climatic factors had a significant effect on phenolic and flavonoid content. Levels of total and some individual glucosinolates were higher in sprouting broccoli than in the green broccoli variety 'Ironman'. CONCLUSION: Levels of total phenolics, flavonoids and glucosinolates are higher in sprouting than green broccoli types. Sprouting broccoli represents an excellent source of dietary bioactive compounds. © 2013 Society of Chemical Industry.