Agroscope, Institute for Plant Production Sciences IPS, 1260 Nyon, Switzerland

Effect of no-tillage on yields (1995 – 1999)

“In the long-term field trial “”Oberacker”” at Zollikofen (Switzerland) crop yields were measured to determine the effect of no-tillage without any soil disturbance and conventional tillage with mouldboard plough. The collected data of the first five years of trial with the field crops winter wheat, winter barley, silage corn, sugarbeets, and potatoes were compared. Whereas no-tilled winter wheat and winter barley showed absolutely similar results, and even reached slightly higher yields on average than on conventionally tilled plots, silage corn showed no essential differences between the two tillage treatments on total dry matter production. However, cob yields on the no-tilled corn plots were on average clearly higher. Sugarbeets reached on no-tilled plots, after an initial yield reduction, the yield level of conventionally tilled plots, as well. In contrast, yields of mulch tilled potatoes did not satisfy in any year and were in terms of quantity – but even more so qualitywise – clearly below the level of conventionally tilled potatoes.”

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