CSA-20306 Soil-Plant Relations


Studiepunten 6.00

Group work3
Course coordinator(s)dr. ir. TJ Stomph
ing. H Drenth
Lecturer(s)prof. dr. E Hoffland
dr. ir. TJ Stomph
Examiner(s)dr. ir. TJ Stomph

Language of instruction:


Mandatory knowledge:

ZSS06100 Laboratory Safety

Assumed knowledge on:

- Biology of plants: Students are expected to have followed one of the courses PPH-10306 Biology of plants or PPH-10806 Structure and function of plants or the equivalent basic biology of plants through another course e.g. at another university.
- Chemistry at introductory level
- Computer literacy

Continuation courses:

CSA-32806 Functional diversity for sustainable crop production;
HPC-21306 Crop Ecology;
PPS- 30806 Analysing sustainability of farming systems;
SOQ-32806 Biological Interactions in Soils;
SOQ-31806 Nutrient management.


Note: This course has a maximum number of participants. The deadline for registration is one week earlier than usual.
See Academic Year.(http://www.wur.nl/en/Education-Programmes/Current-Students/Agenda-Calendar-Academic-Year.htm) -> Registration for Courses.

Plant roots absorb water and nutrients from the root medium. The bio-availability of these growth factors is determined by a variety of biological, physical and chemical processes and properties. The plant itself affects these processes and soil properties in its rhizosphere. The interactions between the plant and its root environment represent the core of theory and practicals. Basic soil science is taught to be able to understand soil-plant interactions. In addition, practical consequences for maintenance of soil fertility are addressed.

Learning outcomes:

After successful completion of this course students are expected to be able to:
- define and characterize the three phase soil system, the properties of the soil constituents and the role of soil life;
- explain the processes and factors determining bioavailability of nutrients in the soil, processes and factors determining uptake of water and nutrients and of losses of nutrients from the soil;
- understand root growth, root distribution and root functioning in relation to abiotic factors in the biosphere;
- use a model predicting nitrogen mineralization;
- explain the basic principles of the ecology of the rhizosphere;
- compose and evaluate nutrient balances and evaluate the principles of the current nutrient policy;
- execute some basic lab methods frequently used in soil-plant interactions research.


- attending lectures;
- participation in practicals and tutorials;
- preparing written reports on practicals and tutorials, poster presentation.


Written exam and assessment of the poster and oral presentation on the practicals.


A syllabus is available in Brightspace.

Verplicht voor: BPWPlant SciencesBScB: Spec. B - Plant Production and Ecology3WD
Keuze voor: BATBiosystems EngineeringBSc3WD
Keuze voor: WUCCPBSc Minor Concepts in Crop Production3WD, 3WD