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.
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