See more from this Division: ASA Section: Agronomic Production Systems
See more from this Session: Organic Management Systems Community: II (Includes Graduate Student Competition)
Tuesday, October 18, 2011
Henry Gonzalez Convention Center, Hall C, Street Level
Sunn hemp (SH) is a fast growing tropical species that is widely grown as green manure in the tropics where is also grown as an animal fodder and fiber crop. It is a legume adapted to a wide range of environmental conditions and soil types. Furthermore, it tolerates droughts and can grow in low fertility soils. SH produces high biomass yields, fixes N and is resistant to several nematodes. However, SH cannot produce seed in temperate climates of the continental USA. Two cultivars bred at Auburn University (AU Golden and AU Durbin) are able to produce commercial seed. They were evaluated for biomass production and mineral content under different environmental conditions against two tropical cultivars. Cultivars had the same performance for all the traits measured. Planting date had significant effects on all traits.
Sericea lespedeza (SL) has been used mostly in soil conservation and to a lesser degree as a forage crop. Once established, SL is a low input crop. AU Pixie is a new low-growing SL developed at Auburn University. Plants are initially upright, but as they mature, the outer stems bend downward and spread in a loose, low-growing ground cover; new growth in the center remains upright. While other sericea lespedeza cultivars grow to 40 to 45 inches high at maturity, the new legume reaches only about 20 inches at full height. AU Pixie was planted as a live mulch in pumpkins to determine its effect on fruit production of the vegetable crop and on incidence of aphid-transmitted viruses. Pumpkin plants grown with AU Pixie as live-mulch between rows had more marketable fruit number and weight and less virus incidence