Impact of tillage and crop establishment methods on crop yields, profitability and soil physical properties in rice–wheat system of Indo‐Gangetic Plains of India
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Vivak Kumar, Mahesh Kumar Gathala, Yashpal Saharawat, Chitar Mal Parihar, Rajeev Kumar, Robin Kumar, Mangi Lal Jat, Arjun Jat, Deep Mahala, Lalit Kumar, Hari Nayak, Muli Parihar, Vikas Rai, Hemraj Jewlia, Bhola Kuri. (1/6/2019). Impact of tillage and crop establishment methods on crop yields, profitability and soil physical properties in rice–wheat system of Indo‐Gangetic Plains of India. Soil Use and Management, 35 (2), pp. 303-313.
Conservation agriculture (CA) based on best‐bet crop management practices may increase crop and water productivity, as well as conserve and sustain soil health and natural resources. In a 2‐year study, we assessed the effects of tillage and crop establishment (TCE) methods on productivity, profitability and soil physical properties in a rice–wheat (RW) system. The six TCE treatments were used to study the impact, which are puddled transplanted rice followed by conventionally tilled wheat (CTPR–CTW), direct‐seeded rice on the flat followed by zero‐till wheat (CTDSR–ZTW), zero‐till direct‐seeded rice with residue followed by zero‐till wheat with residue (ZTDSR+R–ZTW+R), transplanted rice after rotavator puddling followed by zero‐till wheat (RTTPR–ZTW), transplanted rice after rotavator puddling followed by rotary till wheat (RTTPR–RTW) and farmer practice rice–wheat (FP–RW). Result of the study revealed that mean rice yield was not significantly affected by different TCE methods. Wheat planted with ZTDSR+R–ZTW+R gave 30% larger grain yield than FP‐RW. Overall, among all the TCE treatments, the RW system yields and net returns were maximum under ZTDSR+R–ZTW+R. The fastest mean infiltration rate (0.10 cm hr–1) was registered in ZTDSR+R–ZTW+R plots, whereas the slowest was in FP‐RW plots (0.05 cm hr–1). Bulk density at 15–20 cm soil depth was least in ZTDSR+R–ZTW+R (1.70 Mg m–3) and greatest in FP‐RW (1.73 Mg m–3). Results from this study revealed that conventionally tilled (CT) and transplanting of rice could be successfully replaced by adoption of the profitable double ZT–RW system.
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