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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Doublecrop Small Grain-Snap Bean in Rotation with Corn Or Soybean to Achieve Economic and Environmental Goals

Authors
item Strock, Jeffrey - UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA
item Russelle, Michael
item Rosen, Carl - UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA
item Apland, Jeffrey - UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA
item Rabaey, Tom - GENERAL MILLS

Submitted to: ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: November 1, 2005
Publication Date: November 1, 2005
Citation: Strock, J., Russelle, M.P., Rosen, C., Apland, J., Rabaey, T. 2005. Doublecrop small grain-snap bean in rotation with corn or soybean to achieve economic and environmental goals [abstract]. ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting Abstracts. CD-ROM. Paper. No. 3702.

Technical Abstract: Farmers often are not interested in planting cover crops because these crops do not provide income and involve extra expense. Cover crops also frequently fail to achieve environmental goals in cold regions. Winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) and spring barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) may be managed as cover crops and yet produce marketable commodities. The objective of this experiment was to evaluate drainage discharge and nitrate-nitrogen (N) losses through subsurface drainage, and breakeven grain yield of corn (Zea mays L.) or soybean [Glycine max (L.) Merr.] in rotation with winter wheat- or spring barley-snap bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) doublecrop. Preliminary results indicate that small grain-snap bean doublecropping reduced subsurface drainage discharge by 7 to 14% compared with corn and soybean. Flow-weighted mean nitrate-N concentrations during tile flow were corn and soybean = 23 mg L-1, barley-snap bean = 15 mg L-1, and winter wheat-snap bean = 13 mg L-1. Nitrate-N losses in the subsurface drainage water from the winter wheat- and barley-snap bean doublecrop were about 3.8 and 3.1 times lower, respectively, than from corn and soybean. Using net operating returns for the dominant cropping system in the region, a corn and soybean rotation, breakeven snap bean yields were computed for a range of farm-gate snap bean prices. The estimated breakeven snap bean yields compare favorably to yields from experimental trials when evaluated at prices observed in other regions. This system could be adopted in Minnesota to meet current snap bean demand. The approach used here could be used to evaluate other high-value crops planted after small grain harvest to maintain profitability while increasing crop diversity and improving water quality.

Last Modified: 11/27/2014
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