- M.C. Fortin, Southwestern Ontario Agricultural Research Corporation
(SWOARC), Harrow, Ontario
Evaluation Summary (Tech. Transfer Report Summaries)
View / Download Report [222 KB pdf]
Associated SWEEP/LSP Research
Completed: March, 1991
crop residue, corn, no-till, conventional tillage, soil temperature,
soil moisture, early plant development, phytotoxicity, trash whippers, hybrid
variability, bulk density, emergence, residue management
No-till corn production is a soil conserving system that presents several
challenges in terms of crop performance. The presence of crop residues on
the soil surface results in many changes of physical, chemical and biological
nature. These changes concern mainly soil temperature but also, soil water
content, nutrient availability and phytotoxicity. In order to distinguish
between residue effects on corn due to low soil temperatures from other
residue effects, corn development was related to soil temperature for eight
different types of residue covers: grain corn, spring canola, spring barley,
spring barley and red clover killed early or killed late, soybean, soybean
and fall rye killed early or killed late. Analysis shows that only corn
plants growing in canola residues may have been delayed by a factor other
than soil temperature.
The changes in soil temperature result almost invariably in delaying
development of a corn crop when residue-covered soil is compared to a bare
soil. The objective of another study was to determine if clearing the residues
off the row in the interrow could alleviate the problem and improve the
water status of a droughty soil. This management study showed that half
of the delay (5 days) due to the presence of residues on the no-till plots
could be avoided by clearing the residues off the row. This practice did
not have much effect on water content when the plants had attained a large
size. Two hybrids previously rated well and less-well suited for no-till
production in 1988 in Huron county were used in the study. The hybrid rated
less-well suited for no-till production yielded more grain per plant than
the other hybrid. These hybrids were also used in another study designed
to address the problem of uneven plant emergence and final establishment
in no-till corn production. This problem is due to changes in surface properties
of no-till compared to conventional tillage. There was a need to measure
the variability of emergence and try to correlate it to some selected soil
properties. The soil properties studied were soil water content, bulk density
and seed depth. Bulk density was negatively correlated to emergence in conventional
plots and water content was negatively correlated to emergence in no-till
plots. The emergence of the hybrid rated less well-suited for no-till production
in 1988 was less variable and less sensitive to seed zone environmental
conditions than that of the hybrid rated well-suited for no-till production.
(From Technology Transfer Report Summaries - A. Hayes, L. Cruickshank,
The goal of the one year study was to determine whether:
Removal of crop residues from the row would increase the rate of early
Presence of residues in the soil would improve the water status of
Two hybrids would perform similarly for a second year in a different
The residue management treatments used in the study were: conventional
tillage (spring moldboard), first year no-till (residue untouched, residue
removed, residue removed from row area).
Residue management (complete removal of residue) affected corn emergence.
Removing residue from the row area did not result in earlier emergence when
compared to no-till. Growth stages were different for the various tillage
systems. The data shows the differences are due to soil temperature. Plant
growth in the no-till treatments was similar or better than the conventional
treatment in all cases. There was little difference in the soil water content
in the rows regardless of whether residue was removed. However, the no-till
treatments had significantly higher interrow water contents than did the
conventional treatment. This difference could be due to the absence of tillage
in the fall and spring rather than the presence of residues on the surface.
Droughty soils benefited to a limited degree with no tillage.
Of the two hybrids studied, Pioneer 3790 is more sensitive to seed zone
environmental conditions than 3902 and may not be suited to no-till conditions.
Both hybrids showed negative correlation with soil water content and no
correlation with seed depth or bulk density.
The study did show that corn planted into canola residue may have been
delayed by a factor other than soil temperature. More study is needed to
determine if there are potential allelopathic chemicals released from the
Good information in this study although it should have been carried out
for a longer time period (longer than 1 year).
SWEEP Report #59 - Evaluation of 58 Commercial
Corn Hybrids (2850 to 3450 C.H.U.) in Two Conservation Tillage Systems Compared
to Conventional Tillage in Kent County, Southwestern Ontario
SWEEP Report #22 - Field Emergence Predictors
for Grain Corn Under No-Till Management
SWEEP Report #56 - Yield Reduction Effects of
Crop Residues in Conservation Tillage
SWEEP Report #57B - Effect of Winter Rye Mulches
and Fertilizer Amendments on Nutrient and Weed Dynamics in No-Till Soybeans.
Future Research: ( ) indicates reviewers suggestion for
priority, A - high, C - low.
(B) Research into allelopathic affects of different residues (canola).
The study should be carried out for a longer period of time and on several
Thursday, May 19, 2011 02:12:02 PM