Crop Responses to No-till Management Practices on Hilly Terrain1
- O. L. Bennett,
- E. L. Mathias and
- P. E. Lundberg2
Management practices are needed that will permit economic crop production in hilly terrain without excessive soil and water losses. Field studies were conducted over a 3-year period to determine the effects of two rates of atrazine on yield of corn (Zea mays L.) sod planted in orchardgrass (Dactylis glomerata L.) for 2 years and to determine the residual effect of atrazine on germination and growth of 16 agricultural plant species the third year. Atrazine at 2.2 and 4.5 kg/ha was applied at planting time for sod-planted corn and compared with two different methods of growing corn using conventional tillage. Regrowth of orchardgrass in sod-planted treatments was measured following harvest of corn. Temperature and soil water measurements were made in sod-planted and conventionally-tilled corn over a 2-year period. Silage and grain yields were significantly higher from sod-planted corn than from conventionally tilled corn. No soil losses were noted in areas where corn was sod-planted as compared to heavy losses in conventionally-tilled corn. Soil temperatures in no-till corn averaged about 10 C less than under conventional tillage methods, with significantly higher amounts of available soil water present in no-till plots than in conventionally-tilled plots throughout the growing season. Residual studies with 16 different plant species indicated very little detrimental effect from residual atrazine after 2 years of application. Growth of many plant species was significantly higher following application of atrazine.Please view the pdf by using the Full Text (PDF) link under 'View' to the left.
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