Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)


Plants, Soils, and Climate

Committee Chair(s)

V.P. Rasmussen


V. P. Rasmussen


While many spring and winter wheat (Triticum aestivum) varieties have been evaluated for yield characteristics under Utah's conventional dryland cropping systems, little is known about these same varieties under new conservation tillage farming management techniques. Farmers are rapidly adopting various reduced tillage systems and need information regarding proper varieties, fertility practices, weed control , etc. A two year field study, in Box Elder County, Utah on a DeJarnet Gravelly silt loam (Loamy-skeletal, mixed, mesic, Calcic Pachic Haploxeroll) and on a Mendon silt loam (fine-silty, mixed, mesic, Calcic Pachic Argixeroll) examined total dry matter, grain yield, percent protein, kernel weight, kernel volume, and average bushel weight responses to four fertility treatments superimposed upon five spring wheat and four winter wheat varieties. Also compared were one spring wheat variety "Komar" and one winter wheat variety "Weston" in a conventional verses conservation tillage dryl and c ropping system. Soi 1 moisture and soi 1 temperature (20 em and 10 em, respectively bel ow the soi 1 surface) readings were compared between the conventional and conservation tillage planting systems. The conservation tillage plantings were done with an air-seeding tillage planter and the conventional plantings were done with standard deep-furrow drills. Dry granular fertilizer (27 -12-0-4 sulfur) was applied to both deepfurrow and conservation tillage plots with the air-seeder. Rates were 0, 168, 224, 280 kg/ha fertilizer material applied. Significant differences were obtained for all spring wheat varieties. Conservation-tilled "Komar" yielded significant yield increases over conventional-tilled "Komar". The opposite held true for "Weston", with the conventional-tilled plots yielding a slightly significant increase in grain over conservation-tillage "Weston". No relative difference in soil water or soil temperature were observed in either variety through time. However, at certain growth stages the differences were clearly discernable. Very little significant differences were established among the winter wheat varieties. Because of heavy infestations of snowmold (Calonectria graminicola) on all winter wheat plots, the true potential yield characteristics of conservation verses conventional tillage remain unproven on these winter wheat varieties.



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