Crop yields and wild oat control in northern Alberta cropping systems

January 1, 2003 Plant Breeding and Agronomy Data 0 Comments

Crop yields and wild oat control in northern Alberta cropping systems

Year: 2003
Authors: Darwent, A.L., Drabble, J.C., O’Donovan, J.T., Soon, Y.K., Mills, P.F., Clayton, G.W., Rice, W.A.
Publication Name: Can. J. Plant Sci.
Publication Details: Volume 83; Pages 171–180.


A study was conducted on the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Research Farm, Beaverlodge, Alberta, to compare nine cropping systems in relation to productivity and wild oat (Avena fatua L.) control. The nine cropping systems consisted of three crop rotations and three levels of banded N fertilizer. Each cropping system had its own regime of tillage and weed control. One of the rotations consisted of mechanical fallow, along with canola (Brassica rapa L.), barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) and wheat (Triticum aestivum L.), while the other two rotations consisted of the same annual crops, but with either flax (Linum usitatissimum L.) or red clover (Trifolium pratense L.) plowdown with partial fallow substituted for mechanical fallow. The three rates of banded N fertilizer were 0, 75 and 150% of recommended, based on soil tests and provincial recommendations. From 1991 to 1994, cropping systems with mechanical fallow and fall tillage after annual crops produced 24% higher total seed yields than cropping systems with no fall tillage after annual crops and either continuous annual crops or red clover plowdown. Increasing the rate of banded N fertilizer from 0 to 75% of recommended increased total crop seed yields but a further increase from 75 to 150% had no significant effect. Although cropping systems with mechanical fallow had an advantage over other cropping systems, the effect of crop sequencing and yearly weather conditions on total crop seed yields was greater than the effect of cropping systems. Wild oat populations varied greatly with year, but the ease of management was greater in cropping systems with the mechanical fallow than in other cropping systems. Wild oat density increased when diclofop or difenzoquat performed inadequately or when poor red clover establishment allowed populations to increase. Reductions in wild oat populations appeared to be largely due to the consistent effectiveness of sethoxydim. Author’s Abstract.

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