Page Banner

United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: CONSERVATION SYSTEMS RESEARCH FOR IMPROVING ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY AND PRODUCER PROFITABILITY

Location: National Soil Dynamics Laboratory

Title: Effect of Conservation Systems and Irrigation on Potential Bioenergy Crops

Authors
item Rocatelli, Alexandre -
item DONOGHUE, ANN
item Arriaga, Francisco
item BALKCOM, KIPLING
item Bransby, David -

Submitted to: Southern Conservation Agricultural Systems Conference
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: July 20, 2009
Publication Date: July 20, 2009
Citation: Rocatelli, A., Raper, R.L., Arriaga, F.J., Balkcom, K.S., Bransby, D. Effect of Conservation Systems and Irrigation on Potential Bioenergy Crops. In: Reiter, M.S., editor. A Multidisciplinary Approach to Conservation. Proceedings of the 31st Southern Conservation Agricultural Systems Conference, July 20-23, 2009, Melfa, VA. p. 68-73.

Interpretive Summary: Renewable energy production in the United States should increase due to economic, environmental, and national security concerns. In the Southeastern US, annual cellulosic crops could be integrated in rotation systems to produce biofuels. Scientists with USDA-ARS located at the National Soil Dynamics Laboratory in Auburn, AL in cooperation with Auburn University scientists designed a project to evaluate three sorghum varieties (1990, SS506 and NK300) and a corn hybrid (31G65) under different irrigation and tillage treatments. SS506 showed higher biomass production at 14 weeks after planting, but 1990 had higher yields after the 18th week. Irrigation affected yields positively. Tillage showed no differences in yield. Thus, a conservation system was recommended due to productivity and environmental concerns.

Technical Abstract: Renewable energy production in the United States should increase due to economic, environmental, and national security concerns. In the Southeastern US, annual cellulosic crops could be integrated in rotation systems to produce biofuels. An experiment conducted in South Central Alabama evaluated three sorghum varieties (1990, SS506 and NK300) and a corn hybrid (31G65) under different irrigation and tillage treatments. SS506 showed higher biomass production at 14 weeks after planting, but 1990 had higher yields after the 18th week. Irrigation affected yields positively. Tillage showed no differences in yield. Thus, a conservation system was recommended due to productivity and environmental concerns.

Last Modified: 9/10/2014