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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Efecto Del Manejo DE Precision En La Productividad DE Maiz En Los Suelos DE Pradera DE Texas (Precision Farming Effecs on Corn Productivity in the Blackland Prairie of Texas)

Authors
item Torbert, Henry
item Searcy, S - TEXAS A&M UNIVERSITY
item Kenimer, A - TEXAS A&M UNIVERSITY
item Harmel, Daren

Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: August 15, 2001
Publication Date: August 15, 2001
Citation: Torbert, H.A., Searcy, S.W., Kenimer, A.L., Harmel, R.D. Efecto del manejo de precision en la productividad de maiz en los suelos de pradera de Texas. Claveran A., Rulfo V., R. y F. O., editors. Productividad y conservacion: Agua y Suelo: Avances de investigacion en agriculture de conservacion II. Morelia Mich., Mexico. SAGARPA. INIFAP. CENAPROS. p. 263-271.

Interpretive Summary: Application of fertilizers is essential to maintain productivity and sustainability of farmers. However, over application not only reduces the profitability of the farmers but potentially degrades water quality. Developing techniques for precision farming that are adoptable to heavy clay soil in Central Texas could contribute to the sustainability of farmers in the region. A project was implemented on a site in Bell County, TX where one field was managed based on present conventional farming practices, and precision farming concepts were implemented on an adjacent field. The precision farming systems used a global positioning system (GPS) receiver to monitor crop yields and to locate soil boundaries, established from soil sampling for plant nutrients. Yield measurements wer correlated with the previous years yield measurements, indicating that yiel variability was repeatable and that fertilizer N management based on site specific yield goals would be justified.

Technical Abstract: Application of fertilizers in production agriculture is essential to maintain productivity and sustainability of farmers. However, over application of fertilizers not only reduces the profitability of the farmers but potentially contributes to nutrient transport from agriculture land to surface and ground water resources. Developing techniques for precision farming that are adoptable to heavy clay soil in Central Texas could contribute to the sustainability of farmers in the region. A project was implemented on a site in Bell County, TX where one field was managed based on present conventional farming practices, and precision farming concepts were implemented on an adjacent field. A global positioning system (GPS) receiver was used to monitor crop yields and to locate soil boundaries, established from soil sampling on a 1 ha grid. Soil samples were chemically analyzed for plant nutrients, including total N, total P, organic C. The GIS layers and database were used to divide the site into homogeneous management units, and fertilizer N applications were made based on site specific yield goals. The impact of the altering fertilizer applications within each management unit were evaluated with the use of small plots, were grain yield and fodder biomass were measured. Grain yields ranged from 8.3 to 10.4 Mg/ha, with the best yield measured in the highest fertilizer N rate in the best management unit area. Yield measurements were correlated to only the previous years yield measurements, indicating that yield variability was repeatable, but not predictable by soil parameters measured in this study.

Last Modified: 10/24/2014