Soil C and N dynamics and hydrological processes in a maize-wheat rotation field subjected to different tillage and straw management practices

A - Papers appearing in refereed journals

Wang, L., Yuan, X., Liu, C., Li, Z., Chen, F., Li, S., Wu, L. and Liu, Y. 2019. Soil C and N dynamics and hydrological processes in a maize-wheat rotation field subjected to different tillage and straw management practices. Agriculture Ecosystems & Environment. 285 (1 December), p. 106616.

AuthorsWang, L., Yuan, X., Liu, C., Li, Z., Chen, F., Li, S., Wu, L. and Liu, Y.
Abstract

The impact of farmland nutrient losses on environment security is of serious concern. Conservation tillage led to reduced water and soil losses and increased grain yield, and is therefore one potential solution, but this approach requires an understanding of the complex adaptive traits for environment conditions. In this study, a 4-year field experiment was conducted to quantify the crop yield, runoff and soil water, organic C and N content dynamics in summer maize-winter wheat rations subjected to different tillage and straw management practices. Based on these, the effects of different tillage and straw management regimes on water, C and N balances of the soil-plant system was evaluated with a 11-year model prediction using the SPACSYS model. The treatments used in this study included conventional tillage (CT) with straw removal, conventional tillage with straw returning (CTSR), reduced tillage (RT) with straw removal and reduced tillage with straw returning (RTSR). The results showed that maize yield was remarkably affected by straw returning while there was no significant tillage effect. By contrast, wheat yield showed a high inter-annual variability, but was not significantly influenced by tillage and straw management practices. The soil water balance analysis demonstrated that the treatments with straw returning improved water use efficiency by increasing transpiration while reducing water losses through evaporation and runoff, compared to the straw-removal treatments. The simulations for all of the treatments showed that the soils acted as C and N sinks in the present study. Furthermore, plots that included straw returning amassed more C and N in the soil than the that with straw removal. Our work demonstrates that in maize-wheat rotation slopping land reduced tillage with straw returning is a win-win practice for the equilibrium between agricultural productivity and low soil water, C and N losses.

KeywordsDanjiangkou Reservoir; Conservation tillage; SPACSYS; Surface runoff; Soil C and N balances
Year of Publication2019
JournalAgriculture Ecosystems & Environment
Journal citation285 (1 December), p. 106616
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1016/j.agee.2019.106616
Open accessPublished as ‘gold’ (paid) open access
Funder project or codeS2N - Soil to Nutrition - Work package 2 (WP2) - Adaptive management systems for improved efficiency and nutritional quality
FunderBiotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council
Publisher's version1-s2.0-S0167880919302324-main.pdf
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online26 Jul 2019
Publication process dates
Accepted21 Jul 2019
Copyright licenseCC BY
PublisherElsevier Science Bv
ISSN0167-8809

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