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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Jonesboro, Arkansas » Delta Water Management Research » Research » Research Project #434519

Research Project: Effect of Residue Management on Planting Readiness

Location: Delta Water Management Research

Project Number: 6024-13000-003-37-R
Project Type: Reimbursable Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Apr 1, 2018
End Date: Mar 31, 2019

Objective:
Objective 1: Compare residue decomposition between residue treatments of burned/flooded, burned/non-flooded, unburned/flooded, and unburned/non-flooded each with and without additional fertilizer applications. Objective 2: Quantify planting readiness in early spring in each treatment.

Approach:
This two-year study will take place on two 40-acre fields designated on a production farm near McGehee, Arkansas, for evaluation of typical residue management. The management included a combination of flooded/non-flooded and burned/unburned, resulting in four main treatments separated into four replicates each that were 5 acres in size. Additionally, fertilizer was applied to half of the treatments in late October via ground-drive buggy at 150 lb per acre of a blend consisting of 1,500 lb urea and 1,000 lb ammonium sulfate. The fertilizer was added to promote decomposition of the residue. Instrumentation at all 16 plots included soil moisture at 1 and 3 in, soil temperature at 1 in, and water depth up to 6 in below ground level. A camera was also installed to take multiple pictures daily. The sensors were connected to a data logger and powered by a battery recharged with a small solar panel. Biomass will be sampled to quantify the amount and range of residue. Biomass sampling will be completed in early fall and repeated in the spring at planting to determine decomposition and to quantify readiness to plant.