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ARS Home » Plains Area » Lubbock, Texas » Cropping Systems Research Laboratory » Cotton Production and Processing Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #176389


item Holt, Gregory
item Buser, Michael
item Harmel, Daren
item Potter, Kenneth
item LEE, ED

Submitted to: National Cotton Council Beltwide Cotton Conference
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/2/2005
Publication Date: 6/30/2005
Citation: Holt, G.A., Buser, M., Harmel, R.D., Potter, K. and Lee, E. 2005. Evaluation of processed gin waste for use as a hydromulch. In: Proceedings of the Beltwide Cotton Conferences, January 4-7, 2005, New Orleans, Louisiana. p. 2991-3000. 2005 CDROM.

Interpretive Summary: Erosion resulting from rainfall from sites with steep slopes, bare soil, or construction activity can create problems such as on-site gully formation and/or off-site pollution. To reduce the effects of erosion, mulches are often applied. Mulches applied to disturbed soil or steep slopes with a hydro-mulcher are commonly known as hydro-mulches. Conventional hydro-mulches are commonly made from paper and/or wood. In a previous study, conventional hydro-mulches were compared to cotton-based mulches produced from cotton gin byproducts and cottonseed hulls. This study is a follow-up study from the first evaluation. A total of six mulches were evaluated: a) paper hydro-mulch, b) wood hydro-mulch, c) three cotton gin byproduct mulches produced using the COBY process, and d) cottonseed hulls. The mulches were applied on an unconsolidated sandy clay loam soil using a commercial hydro-mulcher at rates of 2000 and 3000 lb/acre. Mulches evaluated in the study experienced a 4.1 in/hr rain event while tilted at 9 degrees. Results indicate the cotton-based mulches performed equal to, or better than, the wood and paper hydro-mulches in reducing erosion and promoting grass seed establishment. The COBY mulch produced from Texas stripper gin waste had significantly less soil in the runoff than did either the wood or paper mulches. Overall, the cotton-based mulches performed well and show great promise for hydro-mulch applications.

Technical Abstract: The erosion of soil from steep slopes, bare soil, or construction sites can create gully formations that adversely affect the environment and/or fish and wildlife in the surrounding environment. Likewise, soil erosion limits the establishment of beneficial vegetation needed to reduce erosion. The use of mulch has been one method of mitigating the effects of erosion. Mulches that are commonly applied with a hydro-mulcher to disturbed soil or steep slopes for controlling erosion are commonly known as hydro-mulches. Wood and paper are the most commonly used hydro-mulches. In this study, conventional wood and paper hydro-mulches were compared to cottonseed hulls and three types of processed cotton gin byproducts. The mulches were applied at two rates, 2000 and 3000 lb/acre. An unconsolidated sandy clay loam soil on a 9% slope was used and subjected to a 4.1 in/hr rain event. Results indicate both the cottonseed hull and cotton gin byproduct mulches perform equal to, or better than, the conventional wood and paper mulches in reducing soil erosion and promoting grass seed establishment.