WSU Tree Fruit Research & Extension Center

Organic & Integrated Tree Fruit Production

Friday, March 23, 2018


Browse on keywords: legume alfalfa subtillage

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Search results on 03/23/18

7434. Walter, D.T.. 1987. Early studies on the use of legumes for conservation tillage in Nebraska.. IN: J.F. Power (ed.). The role of legumes in conservation tillage systems. p. 9-10.
Describes early research beginning in the 1930s. Surface residues, especially alfalfa, improved soil structure and infiltration. Erosion and runoff from dense, subtilled legume plots was minimal compared to oat or wheat stubble. Sweetclover and alfalfa were the principal legumes. Erosion and excess N mineralization were problems with sweetclover. Subtilling legume residues retarded decomposition and nitrification, increased earthworm casts, and enhanced aggregate stability. When sweetclover decomposed on the surface, 5-10 lb N/ac were lost as NH3, with only a trace lost when residue was plowed under.

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