Technical note Open Access

Maize and runner bean intercropping

Bonzheim, Anja; Haase, Thorsten; Phillipp, Roth

Silage maize (Zea mays L.) is grown over a large area and is closely associated with cropping systems that lack diversity with relatively high impacts on soil quality and nature. Mixed or intercropping can reduce the risk of erosion, increase crop biodiversity, and improve nitrogen utilisation. The combination of maize and runner bean (Phaseolus vulgaris var. vulgaris), which originated in Latin America, has this potential and has been the subject of more intensive research in Germany and Switzerland for several years. Runner bean is closely related to common bean. It has a climbing stem.

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