Field Use of Microwatersheds with Vertical Mulch

Fairbourn, M.L. and Gardner, H.R. (1974) Field Use of Microwatersheds with Vertical Mulch. Agronomy Journal, 66 (6). pp. 740-744.

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Microwatersheds and vertical mulch were tested at the Central Great Plains Field Station, Arkon, Colorado, to determine if their effects on storage and use of soil water in the field were similar to responses obtained in the laboratory. Treatments consisted of microwatersheds with vertical mulch, microwatersheds without mulch, and a flat surface control. Each treatment was replicated twice on both crop and fallow plots. All microwatershed plots had slopes treated with a hydrophobe to increase water runoff and check dams placed at uniform intervals across row areas to keep the water on the plots. Biweekly soil water measurements were made during each growing season by gravimetric analysis in 1972 and by the neutron method in 1973. Grain sorghum [Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench] was grown and plant harvests were made at the end of each crop season. Soil water evaporation was lowest on the microwatershed with vertical mulch treatment as a result of concentration and deep infiltration of precipitation. Increased soil water storage was the major factor responsible for an increase in grain sorghum yield on the vertical mulched microwatershed ranging from 37 to 150% above the control treatment. The vertical mulched microwatersheds seem to have the potential for increasing and stabilizing annual yields in semiarid regions

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Soil water storage, Water use efficiency, Grain sorghum
Author Affiliation: Soil Scientists, USDA-ARS, Cheyenne, Wyoming (Formerly Fort Collins, Colorado) and Fort Collins, Colorado
Subjects: Statistics and Experimentation > Experimentation
Divisions: Sorghum
Depositing User: Ms K Syamalamba
Date Deposited: 10 Jan 2012 03:12
Last Modified: 10 Jan 2012 03:12
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