Monday, November 13, 2006

On-Farm Evaluation of Strip Tillage for Corn in Eastern Kansas.

K. A. Janssen and G. L. Kilgore. Kansas State Univ, 2149 Montana Rd, Ottawa, KS 66067

Row-crop agriculture in East-Central and Southeast Kansas must find ways to offset rising fuel and fertilizer costs and must also reduce sediment and nutrient losses via crop land runoff. Cutting back on tillage and sub-surface banding fertilizers are possible management strategies. In this region, no-till has been slow in adoption because of frequent spring rains and an abundance of slowly drained soils. Strip-tillage has not been evaluated. Experiments were conducted in four eastern Kansas counties to evaluate tillage and fertilization system for corn. The tillage and fertilization systems evaluated were strip-till with all fertilizers injected 5" below the row, no-till with all fertilizers banded 2.5"x2.5" from the seed row at planting, and conventional tillage with fertilizers either pre-plant knifed or broadcast and then incorporated.The tillage and fertilization systems produced statistically significant differences in plant stands, early-season growth of corn and grain yields. Plant populations and corn yields tended to be better and emergence was more uniform for corn planted strip-till than with no-till.