Department of Plant Nutrition

Department
of Plant Nutrition

University of Zagreb, Faculty of Agriculture
Svetošimunska cesta 25, 10000 Zagreb, Croatia
Pavilion 6th, 1st Floor

Department SecretaryPhoneE-mail (+ @agr.hr)
Valerija Leto, dipl. ing. agr.
Administrative Assistant
+385 1 239 3817vleto
Scientific-teaching employeesPhoneE-mail (+ @agr.hr)
Prof. Lepomir Čoga, PhD, Head of Department
Full Professor
+385 1 239 4066lcoga
Prof. Mirjana Herak Ćustić, PhD
Full Professor
+385 1 234 3955mcustic
Prof. Milan Poljak, PhD
Full Professor
+385 1 239 3861mpoljak
Assoc. Prof. Marko Petek, PhD
Associate Professor
+385 1 239 4085mpetek
Assist. Prof. Ante Biško, PhD
Assistant Professor
+385 1 239 3794abisko
Assist. Prof. Tomislav Karažija, PhD
Assistant Professor
+385 1 239 3982tkarazija
Assist. Prof. Boris Lazarević, PhD
Assistant Professor
+385 1 234 3961blazarevic
Mihaela Šatvar Vrbančić, mag. ing. agr.
Assistant
+385 1 239 3667msatvar
Expert-technical employeesPhoneE-mail (+ @agr.hr)
Ivan Pavlović ing. kem.
Technical Assistant
+385 1 239 3885ipavlovic
Vesna Jurkić, PhD
Expert advisor SZVO
+385 1 239 3884vjurkic
Sanja Slunjski, PhD
Expert advisor SZVO
+385 1 239 4046sslunjski

Teaching activities

Teaching at the Department of Plant Nutrition includes lectures, seminars, field work and laboratory exercises, which allows students to develop critical thinking and learning and the application of modern analytical methods for determining the chemical properties and plant-nutrtitonal capacity of the soil and analysis of plant material and physiological processes in the plant and analysis of fertilizers, improvers, nutrient solutions, etc., with an emphasis on applying the results and developing critical thinking. Classes are held in all study programs, including undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate doctoral studies in the field of plant nutrition in horticulture, landscape architecture, protected areas, and plant physiology, ecophysiology and rhizosphere ecology, as well as the use of waste materials in agriculture.

Scientific and research activities

Department of Plant Nutrition conducts numerous field and vegetation experiments in conventional, integrated and ecological agricultural production on the effect of fertilization on yield, yield quality and nutritional value of food, the results of which are presented at scientific and professional conferences. Department also has extensive scientific and professional activity in the field of soil fertility control. 

Analitical laboratory 

Analytical laboratory of the Department of Plant Nutrition (ALIB) conducts tests for teaching purposes, scientific research projects and professional collaboration with companies and individuals.

ALIB conducts analyzes and tests of soil, plant material, mineral and organic fertilizers and soil improvers, compost, digestate, substrate, sludge from wastewater treatment plants, irrigation water and nutrient solutions and gives a final opinion on their compliance with the declared values (if they are listed).

Based on the results of analyzes and tests carried out, ALIB issues opinion on soil quality and recommends fertilization in accordance with the principles of sustainable agricultural production as well as the applicable laws legislation.

Analytical laboratory of the Department of Plant Nutrition based on the Decision of the Ministry of Agriculture is authorized for testing the quality of mineral fertilizers. Also, based on the Decision of the same Ministry, Analytical Laboratory is authorized to perform soil analyzes in terms of monitoring the condition of agricultural land.

The Croatian Accreditation Agency has accredited ALIB according to the international standard HRN EN ISO / IEC 17025 General requirements for the competence of testing and calibration laboratories (HAA - Accreditation Certificate No. 1479 - Accredited testing laboratory of 24 December 2014, www.akreditacija.hr/registar).

History

Department of Plant Nutrition was founded in 1921, when the expansion of educational and scientific work of the Department of Soil Science, Petrography and Mineralogy moved to the Department of Soil Science and Plant Nutrition at the Faculty of Economic Forestry. In 1930, on the proposal of Mihovil Gračanin, and by the decision of the Faculty Council of the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry, the Laboratory for Plant Nutrition was established, as the first scientific institution of its kind. Later on it moved to the Department of Plant Nutrition, which operates independently until 1952. From 1953 to 1977, the Department of Plant Nutrition was transferred to the Department of General Plant Production, and with the establishment of the Faculty of Agricultural Sciences (1978), the Department operated as one of the five departments of the Institute of Agroecology. Since 1992, the Faculty has continued to operate as a unique scientific and educational institution, consisting of twenty-eight departments, one of which is the Department of Plant Nutrition that still operates today.

Chronological overview

  • 1930. Establishment of the Laboratory for Plant Nutrition from which it developed into the Department of Plant Nutrition.
  • 1970. Start of implementation of systematic control of soil fertility.
  • 1980. The first atomic absorption spectrophotometer was procured at the Faculty of Agriculture.
  • 1985. The first Kjeltec nitrogen distillation system was procured, a demonstration of work and workshops (6 days) were organized for all scientific institutes and faculties from the former Yugoslavia.
  • 1989. The first computer processing of analytical data.
  • 1992. Authorization of the Analytical Laboratory of the Department of Plant Nutrition (ALIB) for testing the quality of fertilizers and soil improvers.
  • In 1994., a fire destroyed everything in the Institute in Kačićeva street. The space burned completely. The institute was moved to several pavilions at Svetošimunska cesta 25, where it is still located today.
  • 1996. The first doctorate in the independent Republic of Croatia, in the field of plant nutrition.
  • 1999 Plant physiology becomes an independent subject within the Department of Plant Nutrition.
  • 2005. Authorization of the Analytical Laboratory of the Department of Plant Nutrition (ALIB) to monitor the degree of pollution of agricultural land with harmful substances.

Prominent achievements 

  • Since its establishment until today, Departmen has prepared more than 200 professional studies and studies in the field of determining the plant-nutritional capacity of the soil with an assessment of the suitability of the soil for growing crops and a recommendation for fertilization.
  • Since its establishment until today, the employees of Department hold 5 scientific and 8 professional projects, 1 scientific program, and were collaborators on over 80 projects.
  • Employees of Department are the authors or co-authors of several university textbooks and manuals.
  • 1980. Patenting of an oxido-reduction cap for burning samples by the Kjeldahl method.
  • 1996. The first interdisciplinary doctorate that connects plant nutrition and the nutritional value of agricultural products (food).
  • 2006. Organization of the first Professional Meeting of Plant Nutrition of the Plant Nutrition Section of the Croatian Soil Science Society.
  • Since 2014, the Analytical Laboratory of Department for Plant Nutrition (ALIB) has been accredited in accordance with the standard HRN EN ISO / IEC 17025:2007 in the field of mineral fertilizer analysis.
  • Since 2016, the Institute has been participating in the work of the Scientific Center of Excellence for Biodiversity and Molecular Breeding of Plants (ZCI CroP-BioDiv)
  • Since 2018, the Analytical Laboratory of Department for Plant Nutrition (ALIB) has been accredited in accordance with the standard HRN EN ISO / IEC 17025: 2007 in the field of analysis of mineral fertilizers and soil.
  • Employees of Department are winners of the following awards: Medal of the Faculty of Agriculture for outstanding contribution to scientific research, teaching and professional activities, Award 'Mihovil Gračanin' of the Croatian Soil Science Society, Award for excellence in teaching at the suggestion of students of the Faculty of Agriculture, Annual Award of Croatian Waters significant for water management.

 

 

 

 

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