African Journal of
Agricultural Research

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Agric. Res.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1991-637X
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJAR
  • Start Year: 2006
  • Published Articles: 6801

Full Length Research Paper

Effects of various tillage systems on soil CO2-C fluxes and on bacteria and fungi populations in Zea mays

Sefa Altikat1*, Ahmet Celik2 and Serdar Bilen3      
1Department of Agricultural Machinery, Faculty of Agriculture, Igdir University, 76000 Igdir, Turkey. 2Department of Agricultural Machinery, Ataturk University, Faculty of Agriculture, 25240 Erzurum, Turkey. 3Department of Soil Science, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Ataturk, Erzurum, Turkey, 25240 Erzurum, Turkey.  
Email: [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 16 April 2012
  •  Published: 19 May 2012


The objective of this study is to determine the effects of strip tillage and full-width tillage treatments on soil carbon (IV) oxide-carbon (CO2-C) fluxes, bacterial and fungal populations in growing period of Zea mays. A row-crop rotary hoe with C type blades was used to create three strip widths by changing the connection of blades of the rotary hoe on the flanges. Strip widths were 22.5 (T30), 30 (T40) and 37.5 cm (T50). The full-width tillage practice (moldboard plow + disc harrow + leveler) gave 100% surface soil disturbance (T100) and was included in the experiment to make comparisons with the strip tillage system. During the growth of theZea mays, periodic measurements of CO2-C fluxes, bacterial and fungal populations were made. Statistically significant differences in CO2-C fluxes, microbial populations and soil bulk density were observed between the different tillage systems. Highest CO2-C fluxes and bacteria populations were observed with the full-width T100 treatment and the lowest values were observed in the T30 treatment during flowering and harvesting periods. Increasing tillage intensity increased soil CO2-C fluxes and bacteria population, but decreased fungi population and soil bulk density.


Key words: Carbon IV oxide-carbon flux, strip tillage, strip width.