Scientific research

Pre-sowing soil processing preventing earth crusting during cotton cultivation

Author: Knowledge Management in CACILM Phase II, ICARDA.

Definition of technology:

Soil preparation using a special form of the roller allows preventing soil crusting and avoid cotton replanting.

Brief summary of technology:

Cotton sowing by the proposed technology is made on a leveled field, where soil compaction over the planting area is made using a special roller, with which seeders are equipped.

The roller is a form of a cylinder and a half cone, joined together, that gives a shape of a roller to the soil surface. Profile of the compacted soil over the seeding strip consists of the following elements: a semi-oval (7), a sharp slice (5) and semi-horizontal element (6). The surface of compacted soil with a sharp slice creates conditions for uneven soil moisture by precipitation – in semi-oval part the moisture is absorbed less, and in part semihorizontal - more. That is, non-uniform conditions for the evaporation of moisture from the compacted soil surface are created over the germinating seeds. Due to the uneven wetting, cracking occurs along the abrupt slice line. The figure shows the cracks over germinating seeds of cotton (9). Cracks create conditions for the access of water, air and heat – the main factors of plant life. Evaporation of moisture from the surface of semi-oval part of compacted soil is more intense, it is more exposed to solar radiation and wind, and therefore dries faster, begins to decrease in volume and cracks along a sharp slice line. After the formation of cracks, semi-oval portion is moved back from the line of fracture. Cracking promotes further germination, and also provides optimal water, heat and air modes, not allowing seeds to rot after rain. Soil processing with a roller of a new design prevents crusting over seed strip of cotton, reseeding is eliminated, saving seeds, labor and fuel.

Location: Ahal, Balkan, Mary and Lebap provinces.

Area of technology application: 2-1000 ha.

Stage of intervention: prevention / mitigation of land degradation.

Main land use issues and the main causes of land degradation:

In spring, after cotton planting, the soil crusting takes place because of the precipitation that leads to compaction of the topsoil. As a result, rotting of seeds in the soil takes place, which forces replanting, in turn causing a considerable damage to the farm.

Main technical features of technology:

Prevents crusting, creates optimal conditions for seed germination, improves vegetation cover.

Type of land use Conservation measures

Irrigated arable land.

Production of annual crops - Во(Ca).

Agronomic measures:

A3: Processing of the soil surface.

52

Environment

Habitat Anthropogenic environment

Average annual rainfall: 120-200 mm.

Altitude (meter above sea level): 420-780 m.

Landscape: valley and mountainous areas.

Slope (%): 1-7.5%

Soil fertility: average.

Humus content in arable horizon: 0.4-1.85%.

Natural soil drainage/infiltration: good.

Size of land area (ha): 10-1000 ha.

Landholder: farmers and tenants.

Land ownership: private use.

Water use rights: private use.

Market orientation: market oriented.

Assessment

Impact of technology

Main advantages:

- the technology is easy to use;

- does not require tangible investments;

- prevents crusting and reseeding;

- saves seeds, labor and fuel.

Main disadvantages:

Acceptance/adoption of technology: Heads of cotton farms started to implement this technology into current practice.

Reference(s): Reports and recommendations of the Turkmenistan Academy of Sciences.

Name of person(s) collected this description: A.S. Saparmyradov, Chief expert of the Department of Agriculture, the Academy of Sciences of Turkmenistan.

Address: 15, Bitarap avenue, Ashgabat744000, Turkmenistan.

Tel.: +993 12 94-30-60; Mob.: +993 65 63-71-15.

 E-mail:  keremli@mail.ru

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