Do We Put Tiling on Hold?

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Do We Put Tiling (Subsurface Drainage) on Hold?
or Does Agriculture move towards More Sustainable Agricultural Water Management? Presented at the Ohio Academy of Sciences, April 2012.

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Do We Put Tiling on Hold?

  1. 1. Do We Put Tiling (Subsurface Drainage) on Hold? orDoes Agriculture move towards More Sustainable Agricultural Water Management? Dr. Larry C. Brown Professor, Extension Agricultural Engineer Department of Food, Agricultural, and Biological Engineering The Ohio State University 614-292-3826 brown.59@osu.edu
  2. 2. Drainage impacts, research needs, potentialpractices for nutrient capture and reduction• Edge-of-Field data very important (USDA-ARS Soil Drainage Research Unit)• Drainage Water Management (controlled drainage), Estimating Nitrate-load Reductions w/DrainMod• Nitrate Wood-Chip Bioreactors• Phosphorus Filters w/Steel Slag Aggregate• Saturated Buffers (controlled drainage interface between cropland and buffers)• Two-Stage Channels• Water Table Management with Constructed Wetlands (WRSIS)
  3. 3. Water Table Management• Conventional Subsurface Drainage• Controlled Drainage• Subirrigation
  4. 4. Objective of Subsurface Drainage is toRemove Excess Soil-Water from theRoot Zone, and Sometimes to ProvideOutlet for Surface Inlets
  5. 5. Expanded Wetland Yocom Farm Ag Constructed Champaign County Wetland at Ohio Outlet Existing Wetland - 2000
  6. 6. Ohio is Home to Two Long-Term Drainage-Crop Yield Studies•G.O. Schwab et al., Drainage XStudy at Castalia, Sandusky XCounty•Toledo Silty Clay – 20 Years•Brown, Reeder et al.,Drainage/Tillage Study atOARDC Northwest ResearchStation, Wood Co•Hoytville Silty Clay•12-25 yrs (on-going)
  7. 7. Study by Professor G.O. Schwab et al.Managing Soil Water through drainage on poorly drained and somewhat poorly drained soils helps to decrease year-to- year variability in crop yield Contact Dr. Brown for Handout with Data Summary
  8. 8. For Many of Ohio’s Poorly Drained, and Somewhat Poorly Drained Soils:• Compared to lands with adequate surface drainage, –Subsurface drainage improvements may increase yields by 25-30 bu/ac for corn and 3-12 bu/ac for soybean• Compared to lands with adequate subsurface drainage, and where conditions are appropriate, – Controlled drainage may increase corn yield by up to 20 bu/ac, soybean yield by to 2 bu/ac• Compared to lands with adequate subsurface drainage, and where conditions are appropriate, – Subirrigation/controlled drainage may increase yields by 25-60 bu/ac for corn and 9-12 bu/ac for soybean Ohio State University/USDA-ARS Crop Yield Data
  9. 9. What about Subsurface Drainage and Water Quality?
  10. 10. USGS
  11. 11. Source areas of N to Gulf of Mexico and Great Lakes
  12. 12. Fausey, 2004
  13. 13. Water Quality and Quantity Impacts of Agricultural Subsurface Drainage•Fausey, Brown, Belcher and Kanwar (1995)reviewed/summarized 150+ journal articlesand published reports that discuss applicationand impact of agricultural drainage.•From this literature review, water quantity andquality impacts related to subsurface drainageas percentage change of quantity or qualityparameter are summarized below.
  14. 14. Water Quality and Quantity Impacts of Agricultural Subsurface Drainage It is important to note: This information should be used inreference to the studies being conducted on agricultural land where subsurface drainage was in place and compared to similar conditions where subsurface drainage was not in place. All soils,slope, surface drainage, climate, cropping and management conditions, etc., were generally the same at each site.
  15. 15. Impact of Agricultural Subsurface Drainage as Percentage Change in Value of Water Quantity or Quality Parameter Water and Sediment • Reduction in total amount of runoff that leaves site as overland flow ranged from 29 to 65% • Reduction in peak runoff rate of overland flow ranged from 15 to 30% • Reduction in total amount of sediment lost from site by water erosion ranged from 16 to 65%
  16. 16. Impact of Agricultural Subsurface Drainage as Percentage Change in Value of Water Quantity or Quality Parameter Soil-Bound Nutrients • Reduction in amount of phosphorus lost from site by water erosion ranged from 0.0 to 45% • P reduction related to reductions in total soil loss, total runoff, peak runoff rate • Reduction in soil-bound nutrients ranged from 30 to 50%
  17. 17. When the research data are reviewed in the proper context, there are many positive water quality benefits with properly designed and installed subsurface drainage systems.However, there is no doubt that the major water quality issue with subsurface drainage is the export of nitrate–nitrogen, N03 to surface waters, and possibly other solutes (LC Brown).
  18. 18. In the Hydrologic Context:Presence of subsurface drainage generally: Increases infiltration Decreases runoff and sediment lossTherefore, it tends to also: Increase losses of more mobile compounds, like nitrate and phosphate, through subsurface drainage water Decrease runoff losses of sorbed compounds, such as particulate phosphorus, pesticides, etc.
  19. 19. Consider that anytime the drains are flowing, there is most likely some nitrate-nitrogen being exported. Image from Kladivko, Brown and Baker – Purdue University
  20. 20. Pesticide transport to subsurface drains in humid regions of North America (Kladivko, Brown and Baker, 2001) Reviewed 30+ North American studies of pesticide transport into subsurface drains Provided background information on subsurface drainage use and geography, for hydrologic context Evaluated implications of data in light of other contributions to surface water degradation
  21. 21. Consider that pesticides have the greatest potential to beexported through subsurface drains to surface waters issoon after application in the spring. And,….. When surface inlets discharge into subsurface drainage systems, or subsurface drainage system is not maintained, or when blowholes or other short-circuiting mechanisms are present……..
  22. 22. Modeling Water Balance Midway Between Two Subsurface DrainsPredicting Relative Crop Yields and Nitrogen Fate DRAINMOD Water Management Model
  23. 23. Overall Average Relative Crop Yield for Kokomo Silty Clay Loam from DRAINMOD SimulationsOverall Average Relative Yield (%) Drain Depth (cm) 3’ 4’ 4.5’Drain Spacing, cm(ft) 60 70 80 90 100 110 120 130 140 150 500 (16’) 62 66 72 77 79 80 81 81 81 81 750 (25’) 62 66 69 76 80 81 82 82 82 82 1000 (33’) 60 66 69 75 79 81 82 82 83 83 1500 (50’) 57 60 66 70 76 79 81 82 82 82 2000 (66’) 54 57 59 63 68 71 74 77 78 79 3000 (100’) 46 50 53 56 57 60 62 63 64 65 5000 (166’) 36 37 39 42 44 48 49 51 52 53 100000 (3280’) 20 Continue this assessment with DM-NII on 58 soils series
  24. 24. Water Table Management• Conventional Drainage• Controlled Drainage• Subirrigation
  25. 25. For Many of Ohio’s Poorly Drained, and Somewhat Poorly Drained Soils:• Compared to lands with adequate surface drainage, – Subsurface drainage improvements may increase yields by 25-30 bu/ac for corn and 3-12 bu/ac for soybean• Compared to lands with adequate subsurface drainage, and where conditions are appropriate, – Controlled drainage may increase corn yield by up to 20 bu/ac, soybean yield by to 2 bu/ac• Compared to lands with adequate subsurface drainage, and where conditions are appropriate, – Subirrigation/controlled drainage may increase yields by 25-60 bu/ac for corn and 9-12 bu/ac for soybean Ohio State University/USDA-ARS Crop Yield Data
  26. 26. Drainage Water Management
  27. 27. Artificially Raise the Outlet Elevation Managing the Outlet Elevation – not Plugging the Outlet We do NOT suggest that you Plug the Outlet! NRCS Practice Standard 554Drainage Water Management
  28. 28. Nitrate N Concentration mg/L 35 OARDC Northwest 30 Agricultural Research Station 25 Free Drainage 20 15 Controlled Drainage 10 5 Subirrigated 0 1m 2m 3m Depth Norman R. Fausey, USDA-ARS Soil Drainage Research Unit
  29. 29. 30 OARDC NorthwestNitrate-N load (Kg/ha/yr) 25 Agricultural Research Station 20 Corn 15 Soybean 10 5 0 Free Controlled Subirrigation Norman R. Fausey, Drainage Drainage USDA-ARS Soil Drainage Research Unit
  30. 30. Nitrate andPhosphateConcentrations inDrainage Water withand withoutControlled Drainage(Fausey data).
  31. 31. A different way to approach design, installation and managementfor improved water quality and potentially improved crop yields
  32. 32. On appropriate landscapes, we expect up toa 50% reduction in Annual Nitrate Loads, onaverage, by Managing Agricultural Drainage Systems in Ohio and across the Midwest “Change in Outflow Volume” Minimal change in Concentration We continue to research impacts on cropyields, economics, soil-water, and nitrate-nitrogen and soluble phosphorus fate, etc.
  33. 33. For Many of Ohio’s Poorly Drained, and Somewhat Poorly Drained Soils:• Compared to lands with adequate surface drainage, – Subsurface drainage improvements may increase yields by 25-30 bu/ac for corn and 3-12 bu/ac for soybean• Compared to lands with adequate subsurface drainage, and where conditions are appropriate, –Controlled drainage may increase corn yield by up to 20 bu/ac, soybean yield by to 2 bu/ac• Compared to lands with adequate subsurface drainage, and where conditions are appropriate, – Subirrigation/controlled drainage may increase yields by 25-60 bu/ac for corn and 9-12 bu/ac for soybean Ohio State University/USDA-ARS Crop Yield Data
  34. 34. Hydrology of Controlled Drainage/Subirrigated System(CWAES – USDA-ARS-SDRU & OSU-FABE/Soil Ecology) Controlled 60-80 day Subirrigation/ Controlled•Up to 40% Drainage prep, plant, Controlled Drainage ermerge Drainagereduction in (Rainfed only) (Rainfed only)subsurface Ponded 80-100 day 30 day subirrigation Pondeddrainage flows Soil 30 day draw- draw-•Up to 80% Surface down downreduction in nitrate Waterloads Table•30% to 50%improvement in Drain Depthcrop yields Jan Mar Jun Oct Nov Dec Brown, Fausey et al.
  35. 35. Crop Yields with CWAES @ PREC Corn Brown, Fausey, Workman, Subler, Bierman180160 156.2 Soybean140 112.7 116.6 121.4 114.1 60120 54.2 90.9100 50 43.1 44.6 76.9 80 60 40 39.7 31.2 28.5 26.5 28.8 40 30 24.1 20 0 20 1995 1996 1997 1998 10 0 SI/CD SSD 1995 1996 1997 1998 Partial-season subirrigation in 1995 and 1998 Full-season subirrigation in 1996 and 1997 SI/CD SSD 7.7 in precip during subirrigation period in 1996 13.1 in precip during subirrigation period in 1997
  36. 36. Brown, Fausey et al.
  37. 37. Wetland-Reservoir-Subirrigation-Systems (WRSIS) Agricultural Drainage Water Harvesting, Treatment, Storage, and Recycling for Irrigation Water Supply, Crop Yield Increase and Water Quality Improvement •Increased wetland acres on farmland •Improvement in wetland vegetation and wildlife habitat •Significant increase in crop yields •Significant improvement in water quality •Potential to provide only clean water leaving the farm •Goal was not restoration, but integrating constructed wetlands Collaboration w/USDA-NRCS; ODNR-DSWC; producers; others within farming systems – “Agricultural Constructed Wetland” •Technology extended to Ontario, Brown, Allred, Fausey et al. Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, China
  38. 38. Fulton County WRSIS Site, Shininger Farm – August 1996  Soil predominantly Nappanee loam  1 - 8.1 ha (20 ac) subirrigated field. Drain spacing is 4.6 m (15 ft)  One 8.1 ha (20 acre) field with conventional subsurface drainage. Drain spacing is 13.7 m (45 ft)  Wetland: 0.57 ha (1.4 ac) area and 3,790 m3 (1.0 million gal) capacity  Reservoir: 0.64 ha (1.57 ac) area and 8,706 m3 (2.3 million gal) capacity  Stream provides additional water supplyOhio WRSIS Photo Courtesy of USDA-NRCS-MVRC&D
  39. 39. Woodchip Bioreactors and Proposed Bioreactor - Phosphate Filter Demonstration at WANRL and FSR Larry C. Brown (OSU), Norman R. Fausey(USDA-ARS), Kevin King (USDA-ARS), Ehsan Ghane (OSU), and Aleksandra Drizo (University of Vermont)
  40. 40. 5’ Soil backfill 10’ Wide Top ViewDiversion 5’ section of non-perforated tile Capacity controlstructure structure Length dependent on treatment area Up to soil surface Side View From Richard Trench bottom 1’ below tile invert Cooke, UIl
  41. 41. Managed Drainage 28 acres 100 ft Spacing WFree Drainage 31 acres100 ft Spacing From Richard Cooke, UIl
  42. 42. 7Changes in Nitrate-Nitrogen 6Concentration (mg/l) 5Dark Blue – inflow conc 4Pink – outflow conc 3 2From Richard Cooke, UIl 1 0 10/10/06 01/18/07 04/28/07 08/06/07 Time Inlet Outlet 7 1.8 6 1.6 5 1.4 1.2 4 1.0 3 0.8 2 0.6 0.4 1 0.2 0 0.010/10/06 01/18/07 04/28/07 08/06/07 01/08/07 01/29/07 02/19/07 03/12/07 04/02/07 04/23/07 Time Time Inlet Outlet Inlet Outlet
  43. 43. Waterman Agricultural and Natural Resources Lab “Water Management focuses on Zero- Discharge”3 WTC Structures installed March 2009 Outlets, one 8” with 15” WTC Manure applied from Dairy Structure 8” 10” OSU Dairy Two-Stage Channel WANRL Stormwater Wetlands Developing Conservation Plan for Zero-Discharge of Pollutants
  44. 44. Draft sketch of bioreactor components
  45. 45. Phosphorus Filter using Steel Slag Aggregate• Dr. Aleksandra Drizo, Research Professor, University of Vermont, and CEO PhosphoReduc (www.phosphoreduc.com).• Implementation and testing of PhosphoReduc system in a treatment train, for the reduction of phosphorus contained in point (agricultural effluents) and non-point source pollution (untreated urban and rural runoff).• Dr. Kevin King USDA-ARS using P filter in Upper Big Walnut Creek Watershed CEAP project
  46. 46. Subsurface Drainage Outlets Short Circuit Buffer FunctionConservation Buffers w/ControlledAgricultural Drainage(Drainage Water Management NRCS 544)CREP Supplemental Practice for Scioto WatershedPossibly included in Western Lake Erie CREP Buffer and Cropland with Subsurface Drainage and Outlet Control Structure Seeking support to verify impact of this practice
  47. 47. Width and Depth of Small Main Channel 30 y = 6.8x0.3303 25 R2 = 0.56Dimensions (ft) 20 width 15 0.3124 y = 0.91x mean 10 R2 = 0.60 depth 5 Ditch Width and Stability 0 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 y = 15.8x0.24 Drainage Area (square miles) R2 = 0.90 30 Ditch Width (ft) 20 stable y = 12.9x0.2718 unstable R2 = 0.93 10 Ward, Mecklenburg, 0 et al. 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 Drainage Area (square miles)
  48. 48. Research needs, potential practices for nutrient capture and reduction• Edge-of-Field data very important (USDA-ARS Soil Drainage Research Unit)• Drainage Water Management (controlled drainage), Estimating Nirtate-load Reductions w/DrainMod• Nitrate Wood-Chip Bioreactors• Phosphorus Filters w/Steel Slag Aggregate• Saturated Buffers (controlled drainage interface between cropland and buffers)• Two-Stage Channels• Water Table Management with Constructed Wetlands (WRSIS)
  49. 49. For information on any of these topics, contact: Dr. Larry C. Brown Professor, Extension Agricultural EngineerDepartment of Food, Agricultural, and Biological Engineering The Ohio State University 614-292-3826 brown.59@osu.edu Agricultural Water Management

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