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Agronomy Journal Abstract - FORUM

Dynamic Cropping Systems


This article in AJ

  1. Vol. 94 No. 5, p. 957-961
    Received: Nov 14, 2001

    * Corresponding author(s): tanakad@mandan.ars.usda.gov
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  1. D.L. Tanaka *,
  2. J.M. Krupinsky,
  3. M.A. Liebig,
  4. S.D. Merrill,
  5. R.E. Ries,
  6. J.R. Hendrickson,
  7. H.A. Johnson and
  8. J.D. Hanson
  1. USDA-ARS, Northern Great Plains Res. Lab., P.O. Box 459, Mandan, ND 58554


Research to integrate the vast array of information needed by producers to make decisions allowing them to remain sustainable in our ever-changing agricultural environment is in its infancy. Present research has not provided crop production and soils information that is adequately comprehensive and holistic for producers to make critical decisions. We propose a dynamic cropping systems approach to help producers make those critical decisions they need to remain sustainable. Our definition of a dynamic cropping system is a long-term strategy of annual crop sequencing that optimizes crop and soil use options and the attainment of production, economic, and resource conservation goals by using sound ecological management principles. Implicit to this strategy is the need for producers to possess information necessary to respond to continual change. Key factors associated with dynamic cropping systems are diversity, adaptability, reduced input cost, multiple enterprise systems, and awareness of environment and information. Development of a dynamic cropping systems research program involves creating a crop portfolio, crop sequence evaluation, and multidirectional flow of information among research, extension, and producers. Dynamic cropping systems approach relies on responsiveness and provides producers with management flexibility for developing their own long-term sustainable crop, soil, and land use systems.

The wise adapt themselves to circumstances, as water moulds itself to a pitcher.

Chinese Proverb

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Copyright © 2002. American Society of AgronomyPublished in Agron. J.94:957–961.