Page Banner

United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: DRYLAND CROPPING SYSTEMS MANAGEMENT FOR THE CENTRAL GREAT PLAINS

Location: Central Plains Resources Management Research

Title: Skip-row Planting in the CGPR as a Drought Mitigation Strategy

Authors
item Vigil, Merle
item Henry, William
item Poss, David
item Nielsen, David
item Calderon, Francisco
item Benjamin, Joseph
item Klein, Robert - UNIV. OF NEBRASKA

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: June 11, 2006
Publication Date: July 11, 2006
Citation: Vigil, M.F., Henry, W.B., Poss, D.J., Nielsen, D.C., Calderon, F.J., Benjamin, J.G., Klein, R. 2006. Skip-row Planting in the CGPR as a Drought Mitigation Strategy. Meeting Abstract. Presented at the 18th World Congress of Soil Science in Phildelphia, PA July 9-13, 2006.

Technical Abstract: The Central Great Plains region (CGPR) is a net importer of feed grains. Last year Eastern Colorado imported 47 million bushels (1.2 million Mg) of corn (Zea Maize) for beef feedlot use. This extensive market provides an incentive to develop sustainable dryland systems for feed grain production in the region. The lack of adequate moisture during silking/pollen shed is the major limitation to dryland feed production in the region. The skip-row method changes the timing of water use during the growing season. This stored water in the middle of the skip-row area becomes available to the plant as it grows larger and may provide a yield advantage under dryland semi-arid conditions. Here we compare alternative planting architecture with conventional planting as a drought mitigation strategy for dryland corn and sorghum (Sorghum Bicolor). Four alternative planting strategies are evaluated: plant two skip two (P2S2), plant one skip one (P1S1), plant two skip one (P2S1) and conventional planting on 0.76m rows (30 inch rows). The P2S2 and the P1S1 treatments performed better than conventional planting in 0.76m rows at the same population with respect to grain yield production for both corn and sorghum. We also measured soil water extraction patterns in these plots and found that the alternative plantings leave some water in the field in the middle of the skip-row area.

Last Modified: 4/16/2014