46-16 Impact of Long Term Management Practices on Soil Chemical Properties Under Cotton Based Organic and Conventional Farming Systems.

See more from this Division: ASA Section: Agronomic Production Systems
See more from this Session: Agronomic Production Section, General II Oral

Monday, November 7, 2016: 1:45 PM
Phoenix Convention Center North, Room 126 A

Amritbir Riar1, David Bautze2, Bhupendra Singh Sisodia3, Monika messmer2, Paul M├Ąder2 and Gurbir Singh Bhullar2, (1)Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL), Frick , SWITZERLAND
(2)Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL), Frick, Switzerland
(3)bioRe Association, Kasrawad, India
Abstract:
Agricultural production needs to be increased in a sustainable manner without compromising the ecological balance of the planet. Therefore, it is imperative to identify and develop production systems, which are highly productive, efficient, ecologically compatible and sustainable in the long run yet economically viable too. Growing evidences show the competence of organic agriculture to conventional agricultural systems for profit margins along with additional benefits of improved soil health and ecosystem services.

However, the process of changes in soil chemistry and how it affects the soil fertility during transition from conventional to organic farming is not well explained in tropical environments. A long-term farming systems comparison trial consisting of a two year crop rotation with Cotton-Soybean-Wheat was set up in 2007 on Vertisols of Madhya Pradesh, Central India. Replicated field plots under continuous organic (Organic and bio-dynamic) and conventional (with and without Bt-cotton) management provides a unique opportunity to examine the process of changes in soil chemical properties over time. The results show a significant increase of soil organic carbon (SOC) in top-soil under bio-dynamic management compared to conventional and Bt-conventional system (0.69 v. 0.59 and 0.57). Over a period of seven years, SOC in the top-soil increased by 0.25 ± 0.02 percent points and 0.21 ± 0.03 percent points under bio-dynamic and organic systems management compared to 0.11 ± 0.02 percent points and 0.16 ± 0.02 percent points under conventional and Bt-conventional systems, respectively. However, SOC in sub-soil did not differ among the systems. Organic management slightly increased alkalinity of soil (8.54 to 8.56) whereas Bt-conventional management reduced the alkalinity of soil (8.52 to 8.39). Organic systems had more total N in top-soil compared to conventional systems, while all systems depleted N in subsoil. A vertical stratification was also measured for P: All systems reflected the addition of P in top-soil and depletion in sub-soil. Fe (EDTA) content of soil increased under all systems with significantly higher additions in top-soil than sub-soil. In all systems, the macronutrients K and Mg, and the micronutrients Zn, Cu and Mn showed an increase in top-soil and depletion in sub-soil. It is evident that fertility of top-soil can be improved with organic managements, however none of the tested systems is replenishing the nutrient pool of sub-soil.

See more from this Division: ASA Section: Agronomic Production Systems
See more from this Session: Agronomic Production Section, General II Oral