Dr. Paul DeLaune, environmental soil scientist at the Texas AgriLife Research and Extension Center at Vernon, said tillage operations can increase soil compaction, thereby increasing runoff.
Each year, depending on market conditions, up to 75 percent of wheat planted in Texas may be grazed, and of that, 95 percent is under conventional tillage, DeLaune said.
"There is a perception among some producers considering no-till production that using no-till in dual-use wheat production will increase compaction and therefore reduce water infiltration and decrease yields," he said. "Studies are needed to determine whether or not this perception is valid."
One management practice to potentially reduce compaction and/or increase water infiltration is the use of an aerator in no-till dual-use systems, DeLaune said.
The tines of the aerator can be varied from 0 to 10 degrees offset, with soil disturbance increased by increasing the offset, he said. The aerator will disturb the soil down to the depth of 8 inches, yet leave considerable residue on the soil surface.
At the Smith-Walker research field near Vernon, DeLaune studied the impact of different tillage operations in dual-use wheat on runoff quantity, water quality and nutrient loss.
Tillage treatments were applied in early September and included: conventional-till, no-till and no-till with aerator offsets at 0, 2.5, 5, 7.5 and 10 degrees. Although two production systems were to be compared (graze-out and graze plus grain), no livestock grazing took place due to drought and poor forage production. However, there was extensive grazing from whitetail deer, he said.
In mid-December, 1.5- by 2-meter plots were established in the two production systems. Rainfall simulators were used to apply a runoff-producing event to the crop, he said.
A simulated rainfall of about 2.75 inches per hour was showered over the crop and allowed to continue until one-half hour after runoff had started. The runoff water was collected, measured and analyzed for quantity and quality.
In his study, DeLaune timed the minutes it took to achieve runoff. He said the runoff came quickest, in the highest quantity and with the most soil erosion from the conventional-tilled plots.
The total amounts of ammonium and phosphorous in the runoff water were higher also from the conventional-tilled plots.
There was no statistical difference in runoff volume, soil erosion and nutrient runoff amounts between the no-till plots and the aerated treatments, he said.
These initial results show that the use of an AerWay aerator may not be economical, based solely on soil and water conservation. Grazing effects and grain yields may indicate otherwise as the study continues, DeLaune said. Grazing effects and grain yields were not taken due to the extreme and persistent drought in 2008-2009.
Runoff quantity, water quality and yield data will continue to be collected over the next two years.
Dr. Paul DeLaune | EurekAlert!
Alkaline soil, sensible sensor
03.08.2017 | American Society of Agronomy
New 3-D model predicts best planting practices for farmers
26.06.2017 | Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.
As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...
Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.
Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...
For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.
While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...
An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.
The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...
A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.
Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...
16.08.2017 | Event News
04.08.2017 | Event News
26.07.2017 | Event News
21.08.2017 | Materials Sciences
21.08.2017 | Health and Medicine
21.08.2017 | Materials Sciences