WSU Tree Fruit Research & Extension Center

Organic & Integrated Tree Fruit Production

Friday, June 22, 2018


Browse on keywords: moisture water storage

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Search results on 06/22/18

3900. Lindstrom, M.J., F.E. Koehler, and R.I. Papendick. 1974. Tillage effects on fallow water storage in the eastern Washington dryland region.. Agron. J. 66:312-316.

206. Allmaras, R.R.. 1967. Soil water storage as affected by infiltration and evaporation in relation to tillage-induced soil structure. p. 37-43.. IN: Tillage for Greater Crop Production (Conf. Proc.).
Soil water storage as affected by infiltration and evaporation in relation to tillage-induced soil structure.

3240. Widtsoe, J.A.. 1908. The storage of winter precipitation in soils.. Utah Agr. Expt. Sta. Bulletin 104, Utah State Univ., Logan, UT.
The storage of winter precipitation was compared between an irrigated farm and six non-irrigated farms in Utah, to determine what proportion of winter precipitation is actually stored in the soil. In the top eight feet, average maximum amounts of winter precipitation stored for five years on an irrigated farm was 82% and for three years on non-irrigated farms the winter precipitation stored was 62%. It was concluded that enough water for dryland farming will be stored in the soils when fallowing is practiced every other summer.

5558. Ramig, R.E. and L.G. Ekin. 1984. Effect of stubble management in a wheat-fallow rotation on water conservation and storage in eastern Oregon.. OR Agr. Expt. Sta. Special Report 713, p. 30-33.

5566. Ramig, R.E. and L.G. Ekin. 1976. Conservation tillage effects on water storage and crop yield in Walla Walla and Ritzville soils.. OR Agr. Expt. Sta. Special Report 459, p.15.

6929. Unger, P.W., C.W. Lindwall, D.W. Anderson, and C.A. Campbell. 1989. Mechanized farming systems for sustaining crop production and maintaining soil quality in semiarid regions.. unpublished manuscript, USDA-ARS, Conservation and Production Research Lab, Bushland, TX 79012.
This review paper presents research results primarily from the Northern Plains, Southern Plains, Pacific Northwest, and Australia, addressing issues of soil quality and organic matter, erosion, water storage and utilization, and how these are affected by tillage choices, crop rotations, and other management aspects. Cultivation of semiarid soils generally leads to soil organic matter (SOM) losses of 40-60%, with most loss in the first 20 years. The active fraction of SOM will change faster than the total SOM. The fraction of N that is readily mineralizable decreased more quickly than total N, indicating a reduction in the nutrient-supplying power of the soil over time. Cultivation decreases the proportion of soil aggregates >1 mm. Dry-stable aggregates >0.84 mm are needed to prevent wind erosion. In the Northern Plains, about 60% of the precipitation falls in the May to August growing season. The crop-fallow system here is relatively inefficient at water storage, storing only 20-25% of the precipitation during the fallow period. Crop stubble is crucial to snow trapping and moisture retention. Alternating strips about 5 m. wide of tall and short stubble increased snow depth and density and resulted in 30% more water storage compared to a uniform medium-height stubble. No-till improved yields in many cases by increasing stored moisture, but suitable herbicides are necessary for weed control. Flex cropping in Montana was the most efficient system for using moisture. In the Central Plains, increased evapotranspiration makes ample surface residue very effective. Yields for wheat in a fallow system were more than double those for continuous wheat, making the fallow system more economic. In the Pacific Northwest, major losses result from runoff and from evaporation, due to capillary action in undisturbed surface soils. Water storage efficiencies were 50-75% during the first winter, and 10-50% during the second winter at Pendleton, OR. Surface residues resulted in greater evaporative losses during the summer. To control erosion, innovations such as the slot mulch system, the paraplow, and basin pitters (dammer-diker) have been used. The paper has an excellent list of references on dryland cropping.

10128. Greb, B.W., D.E. Smika and A.L. Black. 1967. Effect of straw mulch rates on soil water storage during summer fallow in the Great Plains.. Soil Sci. Soc. Amer. Proc. 31:556-559..
A soil water storage experiment was conducted in the Great Plains by tilling in known amounts of wheat straw. Net gains in soil water storage during fallow varied from 1.0 to 4.3 cm at Sydney, MT, from 2.1 to 4.1 cm at Akron, CO, and from 3.1 to 3.3 cm at North Platte, NE. Average amounts of straw at each site were 2,600, 3,800, and 6,000 kg/ha, respectively. The soil water gains were primarily during the spring months of the 14-month fallow season. The water gained by straw mulches tended to improve the soil water content throughout the soil profile.

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