Soil and yield improvements from Controlled TrafficFarming on a Red Chromosol were similar to CTF on              a swelli...
Controlled Traffic field research conducted atRoseworthy South Australia, 1989 to 1994Funded by: Key Centre for Dryland Ag...
Aim: shattering of compact layer and exclusion of wheeltraffic(expectation): this should improve soil structure, root grow...
A “moderate” compact layerbelow tilled depthSome root deflection
Controlled Traffic treatments CT and CTRTillage, seeding (DD) and         Harvestingspraying                              ...
Conventionally wheeled treatments C and CR                (just imagine)Tractor(s) and (identical) trailed implements andh...
NS• 12 to 22% greater yields from CT in 5 out of 6 years.• No significant difference from deep ripping (surprise)
C             Wheat                                      CT“Better” soil structure if you don’t drive on it.(seems obvious...
C                                         CTCR                                     CTRWhich structure is “better”? Deep ri...
Visible porosity (%)                       1.6                                                             0    5       10...
C        CT                          Did CT reduce root                          disease? Why?                          Fa...
Soil penetration resistance
BarleySoil blocks andpinboards                    Bean
Was this reflected in yields/morphology?Why?
100                                                          100                                                          ...
Conclusions/questions•Simply removing the wheel traffic (CT) improved yields by12 to 22%•Deep ripping did not improve yiel...
Thank you Beans and concrete
Soil and yield improvements from controlled traffic farming on a red chromosol were similar to CTF on a swelling black ver...
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Soil and yield improvements from controlled traffic farming on a red chromosol were similar to CTF on a swelling black vertosol. Tim Ellis

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A presentation from the WCCA 2011 event held in Brisbane, Australia.

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Soil and yield improvements from controlled traffic farming on a red chromosol were similar to CTF on a swelling black vertosol. Tim Ellis

  1. 1. Soil and yield improvements from Controlled TrafficFarming on a Red Chromosol were similar to CTF on a swelling Black Vertosol. Tim Ellis CSIRO, Brisbane (previously University of Adelaide) Soroush Sedaghatpour, Cliff Hignett, Hugh Cameron, John Thomas, Jeff Tullberg, Terry Riley and 1 x 106 students
  2. 2. Controlled Traffic field research conducted atRoseworthy South Australia, 1989 to 1994Funded by: Key Centre for Dryland Agriculture andLanduse Systems; John Shearer LTD; Grains ResearchCouncil; and Grains Research and DevelopmentCorporationSite - Roseworthy South AustraliaClimate - Mediterranean-type– rainfall 440 mm/yrSoil – generally Red Chromosol – some variation
  3. 3. Aim: shattering of compact layer and exclusion of wheeltraffic(expectation): this should improve soil structure, root growth and crop yieldC – Conventional wheel traffic; tractors and trailedimplementsCR – Conventional wheel traffic, deep RippedCT – Controlled TrafficCTR – Controlled Traffic deep RippedRipping – 300 mm deep, once only at establishment of trialRandomised split-plot design; each plot 0.1 hectares
  4. 4. A “moderate” compact layerbelow tilled depthSome root deflection
  5. 5. Controlled Traffic treatments CT and CTRTillage, seeding (DD) and Harvestingspraying Modified MF585 harvesterExperimental John ShearerGantry
  6. 6. Conventionally wheeled treatments C and CR (just imagine)Tractor(s) and (identical) trailed implements andharvester
  7. 7. NS• 12 to 22% greater yields from CT in 5 out of 6 years.• No significant difference from deep ripping (surprise)
  8. 8. C Wheat CT“Better” soil structure if you don’t drive on it.(seems obvious) Why?
  9. 9. C CTCR CTRWhich structure is “better”? Deep ripping doesn’t necessarily “improve” soilstructure, especially if you don’t stop driving on it. Why?
  10. 10. Visible porosity (%) 1.6 0 5 10 15 20Bulk density (gcm-3) 1.5 0 1.4 2 1.3 Depth (cm) 4 C tilled layer 1.2 CT tilled layer 6 C 1.1 C below tilled layer 8 CT CT below tilled layer 1 10 1991 1992 1993 1994
  11. 11. C CT Did CT reduce root disease? Why? Faster growth? What type of root growth is “better”?
  12. 12. Soil penetration resistance
  13. 13. BarleySoil blocks andpinboards Bean
  14. 14. Was this reflected in yields/morphology?Why?
  15. 15. 100 100 RainfallCummulative % infiltration (mm) 80 CT 1994 80 Cummulative C 1994 Infiltration C 60 60 CT 1992 Infiltration CT C 1992 40 40 20 20 0 0 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 0 10 20 30 Aggregate size (mm) Time (min) More stable aggregates > 2mm Greater infiltration
  16. 16. Conclusions/questions•Simply removing the wheel traffic (CT) improved yields by12 to 22%•Deep ripping did not improve yields•“Better” soil structure from CT – why? What at thephysical and ecological processes?•“Better root growth from CT – but what is “better”?•More stable soil aggregates; better infiltration•Similar results to a swelling Black VertosolBonus conclusions/questions•Twice as many earthworms in CT compared to C•Easier overall field operations and timeliness•Improved efficacy of direct drilling•Need to measure effects at system scale?
  17. 17. Thank you Beans and concrete

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