Chandra Heglund, Soil Science, North Dakota State University, Fargo, ND, Abbey Foster Wick, Walster 239, North Dakota State University, Fargo, ND, Jason Harmon, NDSU, Fargo, ND and Deirdre Prischmann, Department of Entomology, NDSU, Fargo, ND
Crop response to salt-affected soils is of increasing interest in North Dakota. Over the past 30 years, Eastern North Dakota has entered a wet-cycle, leading to a higher water table and transport of salts from deep in the soil profile to the surface. As a result, producers are experiencing various levels of yield reductions in both corn and soybeans. In this greenhouse study, the effects of various salt levels on above- and below-ground corn and soybean productivity were evaluated. Above-ground parameters included leaf damage and biomass, while below-ground parameters included root development and nodulation, in the case of soybeans. Soil nitrogen pools following a soybean crop were also evaluated in response to the common practice of reducing fertilizer inputs the following year when corn is grown.