Influence of no tillage controlled traffic system on soil physical properties in double cropping area of North China plain
An experiment was conducted to determine the effects of tillage on soil properties in the field of maize (Zea mays L.) and winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) annual double cropping region in North China Plain. Measurements were made following six years (2005 to 2010) of three tillage treatments; no till with controlled traffic (NTCT), no till random trafficking (NTRT) and conventional tillage (CT) on a silt loam according to the USDA texture classification system soil in Daxing district, which lies in the suburb of Beijing. Long term no till with controlled traffic significantly (P < 0.05) increased macro-aggregates, infiltration rate, soil moisture, together with reductions in soil bulk density, soil compaction in different layers compared with the no till random traffic and traditional mould board tillage treatment currently used in this region. Consequently, mean winter wheat and summer maize yields for the NTCT treatment were improved by 2.8 and 7.1% when compared with the soils under no till random traffic, while huge improvement was found when it was compared with conventional ploughing management (4.2 and 12.08% for wheat and maize, respectively). The long-term experiment demonstrated that no-tillage controlled traffic with residues retained, offers a potentially significant improvement over the current farming systems in annual double cropping areas of North China Plain.
Key words: No tillage, controlled traffic, soil physical properties, North China Plain.