Effect of Tillage and Nitrogen on Wheat Production, Economics, and Soil Fertility in Rice-Wheat Cropping System


Conservation tillage and nitrogen may improve soil fertility, yield and income on sustainable basis. The aim of this study was to evaluate the impact of three tillage systems viz. zero (ZT), reduced (RT), and conventional tillage (CT) and five N rates (0, 80, 120, 160, and 200 kg·N·ha-1) on yield and yield components, soil organic matter (SOM), total soil N (TSN), and income of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) grown after rice (Oryza sativa L.). Nitrogen rates significantly affected yield and yield attributing characters with highest values recorded at200 kg·N·ha-1. Mean maximum grain yield (6390 -6845 kg·ha-1), net benefit (1359 - 1460 US$ ha-1), and benefit cost ratio (5.6 - 5.7) could be achieved at 160 to200 kg·N·ha-1. The tillage systems produced similar yield and yield components except spikes m-2. The SOM and TSN were highest in ZT compared to other tillage systems. Though tillage × N interactions were not significant for most of the parameters under study, the overall effect of ZT with200 kg·N·ha-1 appeared to be most favorable compared to RT and CT. Zero tillage resulted in highest number of spikes m-2 (304.4), SOM (9.6 g·kg-1) and TSN (0.5 g·kg-1) with200 kg·N·ha-1. The results suggest that ZT with200 kg·N·ha-1 was optimum and sustainable strategy to achieve higher yield and income and also to improve SOM and TSN on silty clay soil.

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K. Usman, E. Khan, N. Khan, M. Khan, S. Ghulam, S. Khan and J. Baloch, "Effect of Tillage and Nitrogen on Wheat Production, Economics, and Soil Fertility in Rice-Wheat Cropping System," American Journal of Plant Sciences, Vol. 4 No. 1, 2013, pp. 17-25. doi: 10.4236/ajps.2013.41004.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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