Poster Number 1351
Tuesday, October 24, 2017
Tampa Convention Center, East Exhibit Hall
As the global population continues to rise, competition between food production and preservation of water quality has increased. Most current agricultural practices involve simplified landscapes that produce abundant yields, but this type of crop production can produce undesirable effects, as well. Specific examples include reduction of aquatic wildlife habitat and contamination of drinking water due to nitrogen and phosphorous fertilization and subsequent run off and leaching of these nutrients. To address these concerns, perennial grasses integrated into multifunctional agricultural landscapes have been proposed for improvement of water quality. Production and harvest methods, along with location and cultivar choices, are significant components of a multifunctional landscape. We propose incorporating the bioenergy crop, switchgrass (Panicum virgatum L), into a landscape design, such as using buffer strips and marginal land with the intention of alleviating some of these water quality issues while producing biomass. Utilization of switchgrass within a multifunctional agricultural landscape may yield promising results; it has the potential to confer ecosystem services related to water quality improvement and can be harvested for profit. This paper summarized the current status of switchgrass grown for biomass production and nutrient removal under various agricultural settings.