Impact of Different Tillage Methods on Silty Loam Luvisol Water Content in Sugar Beet (Beta vulgaris L.) Crop


The regulation of water regime in the soil is the most important task in semi-humid climate with not even precipitation distribution conditions. Reduced or minimum tillage may change soil hydrological properties. The objectives of this study were to investigate the possibilities to manage soil water regime during the whole soil tillage system for sugar beet, which are especially sensitive for water deficit or abundance. Five field experiments were carried out at the Experimental Station of the Lithuanian University of Agriculture (Aleksandras Stulginskis University since 2011) (54°52'N, 23°49'E) during 1995-2010. The soil of the experiments was silty loam Luvisol. In this study we highlighted the reduction of primary soil tillage from deep annual soil ploughing to shallow ploughing, deep and shallow cultivation and no till, comparison of soil ploughing and subsoiling, presowing ploughed or unploughed soil tillage with different cultivators—S-tine, complex, rotary and others, soil compressing with Cambridge and spur rollers before and after sugar beet sowing investigations. According to the results of experiments, reduction of primary soil tillage conserved soil water. The highest storage of soil water in spring was observed in non-reversibly tilled or not tilled soil. Subsoiling led higher water infiltration rate, and top layer of subsoiled soil consisted less moisture content than ploughed. Sugar beet seedbed moisture mostly depended on soil tillage intensity and depth. Presowing rotary tilling was the top tillage method in the case of water preservation in ploughed or unploughed soil. Soil compressing with rollers mostly had negative or low influence on light loam Luvisol moisture content. Rolling with Cambridge roller effected on more rapid water transport from deeper to top sugar beet seedbed layers and higher evaporation rate.

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K. Romaneckas, E. Šarauskis, L. Masilionytė, A. Sakalauskas and V. Pilipavičius, "Impact of Different Tillage Methods on Silty Loam Luvisol Water Content in Sugar Beet (Beta vulgaris L.) Crop," Journal of Environmental Protection, Vol. 4 No. 3, 2013, pp. 219-225. doi: 10.4236/jep.2013.43026.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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