A $190,000 grant from Southern Sustainable Agriculture, Research and Education will help the university’s Institute of Ecology study the use of shrubby perennial legumes such as false indigo in making soil more suitable for organic farming.
For several years, the Agroecology Lab at UGA has been experimenting with perennial legumes and their potential use as a source of organic matter. The legumes are planted in hedgerows approximately 13 feet apart, and the crops are planted in the resulting “alley” between the hedges. This alley cropping system may be especially beneficial in restoring degraded fields by establishing a nutrient primer.
The funding, administered through UGA, will enable the Institute of Ecology to work toward its main objectives in the areas of research, outreach and education.