Effect of Trampling by Cattle on Bluegrass Yield and Soil Compaction of a Meadowville Loam1
- H. T. Bryant,
- R. E. Blaser and
- J. R. Peterson2
The objective of this research was to evaluate both the tolerance of a Meadowville loam soil (Typic Hapludult; fine-loamy, mixed mesic) and bluegrass (Poa pratensis L.) grown in this soil to three levels of trampling by cattle. The protective effect of 2.5 cm, 7.6 cm, and 20.3 cm of bluegrass at tune of trampling, as measured by the resistance of the soil to penetration, was studied. The trampling pressures, repeated four times during the year, were O, 60, and 120 trips/cow. The pressure, kg/cm2, required for the point of the penetrometer to penetrate the soil was significantly different among trampling pressures for 1, 3, and 4 trampling dates. As trampling intensity increased, maximum resistance to the penetrometer was encountered closer to the soil surface. The height of forage at trampling had no significant affect on either the force required to penetrate the soil or depth of soil at which maximum resistance to penetration was encountered.
Yields of herbage from plots clipped from 20.3 cm to 7.6 cm prior to trampling and after trampling to 2.5 cm were compared with yields from plots clipped prior to and after trampling from 20.3 cm to 2.5 cm, respectively. Yields from plots clipped at 2.5 cm prior to trampling compared to plots not clipped prior to trampling were slightly lower. Increasing trampling pressure had a significantly adverse affect on forage yield for tramplings in June and September.Please view the pdf by using the Full Text (PDF) link under 'View' to the left.
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