The areas where tagetes is cultivated are on the sandy soils of the Netherlands, which are these NUT 3 regions: NL111, NL132, NL131, NL133, NL211, NL413, NL414, NL421, NL422.
In these arable and vegetable cropping region, mainly high value crops are cultivated: potatoes, strawberries, fruits and flower bulbs.
These regions are selected because the nematode problem is very prominent on these soil types and the high value crops that experience significant economic damages if the nematode populations are not controlled. In Brabant, the innovation of tagetes cultivation is already adopted several years ago, in Drenthe it is just coming up.
The study focuses on the flow of knowledge from research and farm-advisors to farmers of the Tagetes Patula cultivation for nematode control (Pratylenchus Penetrans) and the implementation of this innovation on their farm. The reasons why farmers implement(ed) the innovation are analyzed and it is explored from which sources they receive required knowledge to make a well informed decision.
The consulted experts have seen the development and increasing interest of farmers in tagetes cultivation through research and adoption. The main reason farmers start cultivating tagetes is that the alternative (chemical soil disinfestation) becomes increasingly difficult due to stricter rules and regulations. Advisors and researchers are committed to make farmers aware and assist them with the implementation of tagetes. The research was and is mainly executed on experimental farms in the focus areas, and can be seen as a hotspot for innovations. The advisors use the collected data from research and made farmers aware. After the awareness phase, farmers were mainly looking for advice about how tagetes should be cultivated, when it should be sown for maximum results and how to keep weeds under control. Almost all interviewed farmers did already implemented and consolidated tagetes, since the regulations started to become more strict already in the 1990s and became stricter and stricter every year. The implementation of tagetes can be seen as successful, since it is effective, widely adopted and also beneficial on other aspects like soil quality.
Full report is available here.