|Morrison Jr, John|
Submitted to: Transactions of the ASAE
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/15/2002
Publication Date: 10/15/2002
Citation: MORRISON JR, J.E., SANABRIA, J. ONE-PASS AND TWO-PASS SPRING STRIP TILLAGE FOR CONSERVATION ROW-CROPPING IN ADHESIVE CLAY SOILS. TRANSACTIONS OF THE AMERICAN SOCIETY OF AGRICULTURAL ENGINEERS. 2002. v. 45(5). p. 1263-1270.
Interpretive Summary: The conservation growing of row crops, such as corn and grain sorghum, involves the minimum disturbance of the soil and the maintenance of a cover of old crop residues to protect the soil. Farmers need special machines or modifications of conventional machines to conduct the seeding of crops under such conservation field conditions. We investigated some tillage and planting systems which till a narrow strip of soil as a seedbed for the new crop, "strip tillage", and compared them with two "no-till" planting systems which cause minimum soil disturbance, but which are risky to use because the plant stands are sometimes inadequate. Some of these tillage and planting systems are one-pass field operations and some are two-pass. After studies in 1999 and 2000 on two different soils and at four different planting dates, we concluded that four of the experimental one-pass strip tillage systems had lower performance and should be discontinued. The two-pass strip tillage systems and the one-pass no-till systems were of equivalent performance, but management is easier for the two-pass strip tillage systems because the farmer does not have to adjust his planters for changing soil conditions to achieve adequate planting. These results will be transferred to regional farmers as a guide to the best-adapted conservation cropping systems for achieving conservation of natural resources as well as profitable crop production.
Technical Abstract: The use of "Conservation-Tillage" and associated conservation cropping systems are beneficial to long-term soil quality improvement, erosion control, and environmental protection. A common element in such conservation systems is the use of crop residues to cover and continuously protect the soil surface. An approach now being adopted in the USA is "Strip Tillage", wherein residue clearing and tillage is limited to strips or bands of soil where rows will be located for the next crop. The tilled area should not exceed 25% of the field area to maintain enough residue cover to protect the soil. In this paper, data are presented from 1999 and 2000 comparison tests of eight tillage/seeding systems for maize and grain sorghum. The study included one-pass and two-pass Strip Tillage systems compared with No-Till alternatives. With the information available from this study, we would eliminate further consideration of the four experimental one-pass treatments and select either the standard one-pass No-Till systems or the two pass Strip Tillage systems for these crops and field conditions of Central Texas Blackland Prairie.