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ROTATION AND TILLAGE TRIALS - 1955

Harvest of the 1955 trials marked the completion of 49 years of study in dry land farming at the Dickinson Experiment Station.

In the following summary tables, 1955 yields for the 4 principal crops; wheat, oats, barley and corn, included in these trials are compared with annual averages for the past 5 years and with the 45 year average for the more important cultural methods under investigation.

Table 3. Summary - Wheat Yields
Cultural Method No. Plots1 1950 1951 1952 1953 1954 1955 Av. 1908-1952 Relative Yields % 1908-1952
Fallow 4 23.1 23.9 10.7 22.2 9.2 23.6 20.7 100%
Green Manure 3 24.5 23.7 8.9 24.3 12.0 24.9 18.8 91%
Disked Cornland 11 18.4 21.4 9.8 20.7 9.4 20.5 18.2 88%
S. P. Stubble 1 17.2 13.5 7.5 18.7 8.7 17.2 13.4 65%
F. P. Stubble 2 23.5 15.6 9.0 18.7 10.3 15.1 14.8 71%
Continuous:
Spring Plowing 1 14.5 13.7 7.5 15.8 9.0 21.5 11.5 56%
Fall Plowing 1 8.7 13.0 9.2 14.6 4.5 12.2 11.0 53%
Alternate wheat and fallow 1 17.5 22.2 8.2 21.2 10.3 20.7 19.6 95%
1Varies slightly from year to year. Figures given are for 1955.

 

Table 4. Summary - Oat Yields
Cultural Method No. Plots 1950 1951 1952 1953 1954 1955 Av. 1908-1952 Relative Yields % 1908-1952
Fallow 2 51.9 62.2 27.3 59.5 32.1 61.1 46.8 100%
Green Manure 3 58.7 54.6 24.6 65.1 38.0 64.2 45.2 97%
Disked Cornland 5 40.8 54.2 22.1 48.9 26.6 43.6 37.2 80%
S. P. Stubble 4 44.2 35.6 22.5 58.7 33.0 55.9 36.1 77%
F. P. Stubble 5 46.9 37.1 26.3 50.0 19.1 38.5 32.1 69%
Sod 3 43.1 44.9 26.5 48.2 22.3 52.0 33.8 72%
Continuous:
Spring Plowing 1 30.6 42.5 16.9 37.8 25.3 35.9 26.6 57%
Fall Plowing 1 43.0 33.8 20.0 31.6 13.1 28.8 24.6 53%
Alternate oats and fallow 1 53.8 60.6 29.4 50.3 32.2 57.5 45.5 97%

 

Table 5. Summary - Barley Yields
Cultural Method No. Plots 1950 1951 1952 1953 1954 1955 Av. 1908-1952 Relative Yields % 1908-1952
Disked Cornland 1 24.0 35.2 15.9 29.3 15.5 23.3 21.2 87%
S. P. Stubble 1 29.6 22.7 12.4 29.0 18.4 20.4 16.2 67%
Continuous:
Spring Plowing 1 19.4 28.1 16.9 27.1 15.9 20.8 16.0 66%
Fall Plowing 1 12.9 29.2 20.0 23.7 6.5 15.6 14.8 61%
Alternate Barley and fallow 1 32.7 38.5 29.4 32.4 15.5 25.4 24.2 100%

 

Table 6. Summary - Corn Grain Yields
Cultural Method No. Plots2 1950 1951 1952 1953 1954 195 Av. 1908-1952 Relative Yields % 1908-1952
Spring Plowing 14 22.0 23.2 16.0 50.0 14.9 16.6 17.6 100%
Fall Plowing 4 24.1 25.5 18.1 30.0 4.7 9.6 16.2 92%
Continuous:
Spring Plowing 1 22.1 29.1 14.9 22.9 4.2 17.9 19.0 108%
Fall Plowing 1 20.4 34.4 17.6 14.3 3.3 21.4 18.9 107%
Alternate Corn and Fallow 1 16.4 29.1 32.9 14.3 12.0 35.0 20.9 119%
2Varies slightly from year to year. Figures given are for 1955.

 

Table 7. Summary - Corn Silage Yields
Cultural Method No. Plots 1950 1951 19521 1953 1954 1955 Av. 1908-1952 Relative Yields % 1908-1952
Spring Plowing 14 7990 7928 5569 13300 11433 6850 7168 100%
Fall Plowing 4 7224 8726 5450 10175 7450 4140 6268 88%
Continuous:
Spring Plowing 1 7900 8180 2700 8900 5200 4800 6380 89%
Fall Plowing 1 6360 9520 4600 7100 7800 3560 6122 85%
Alternate Corn and Fallow 1 6600 7800 7000 9600 11100 6720 6900 96%
1Silage yields previous to 1952 figured on basis of air dry corn fodder yield calculated as 50% of silage weight.

 

Wheat yields on cornland, fertilized at the rate of 125 lbs per acre of 16-20-0 commercial fertilizer in the new continuous fertilizer series, averaged 26.7 bushels per acre compared with 20.5 bushels per acre on unfertilized cornland, a difference of 6.2 bushels per acre in favor of the fertilized plots. However, silage yields from corn plots fertilized at a rate of 100 lbs per acre of 8-32-0 commercial fertilizer applied in the drill row were no better than silage yields from unfertilized plots. Yields were 6310 lbs of silage per acre from unfertilized plots compared with 6280 lbs of silage per acre from the fertilized trials.

The new tillage trial comparing production on stubble land worked with the one-way disk, the double disk and the mold-board plow produced the following data. Average yield of wheat: on spring plowed stubble was 22.0 bushels per acre; on one-wayed stubble was 17.6 bushels per acre and on double-disked stubble was 14.5 bushels per acre. In this trial production on spring plowed land was 34% better than on double disked land and 20% better than on land worked with the one-way disk.

Generally speaking, yields of all small grains were very good this year mainly because of favorable early season rainfall. Yields of corn were reduced by dry weather in July and August. Cereal rust, other plant diseases or insects caused no important damage to crops this year.

Revision of several old tillage trials are being considered for 1956.


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