2013 Annual Report
1a.Objectives (from AD-416):
This research develops sustainable farming systems that will enhance (i) soil quality,(ii) soybean yield and yield stability under environmental and biotic stresses, and (iii) environmental quality and sustainability; and that will accommodate expected climate variability.
1b.Approach (from AD-416):
The main focus of this project is to (i) develop best management practices that include no-till, cover crops, crop rotations, and gypsum; (ii) characterize their effectiveness in improving soil and crop productivity, and carbon sequestration and in reducing greenhouse gaseous loss to the environment.
A field study to investigate effects of using flue gas desulfurization (FGD) gypsum as a soil amendment to increase crop production, improve soil properties and reduce greenhouse gas emissions in a continuous soybean, continuous corn, and soybean-corn rotation system with and without winter crops was initiated in 2012. Specifically, the impact that gypsum has on chemical, microbiological, physical, and trace flux is being investigated. The data will also be used to determine the economic viability of using gypsum between cropping systems. Trace gas flux measurements are being evaluated during the growing seasons. Plant samples are being assessed for root nodules, root biomass, and nutrient tissue concentration in the upper most trifoliate leaves just before pod fill. At the end of the growing seasons, grain yield and nutrient content of the grain are being determine. The ADODR has monitored activities via email correspondence, teleconferences, and site-visits.