See more from this Session: Bioenergy Systems Community: II
Monday, October 17, 2011
Henry Gonzalez Convention Center, Hall C, Street Level
We are evaluating strategies to produce all the forage, feed, and fuel needed for a Pennsylvania dairy farm while minimizing off-farm inputs & environmental impacts. We are growing winter canola to produce fuel for a straight-vegetable oil tractor and meal for protein in the dairy ration. Canola is integrated into two diverse, 6-year crop rotations that employ no-till, cover crops, legumes, and IPM. In the GRAIN rotation, winter canola is planted after alfalfa and followed by winter rye. In the FORAGE rotation, winter canola is planted after corn silage and followed by alfalfa and orchardgrass. In the GRAIN rotation, we are evaluating two weed management strategies: i. standard herbicides used in no-till systems versus, ii. multiple weed control strategies that reduce herbicide use. In the reduced herbicide management strategy, prior to planting canola, alfalfa is terminated with plowing versus glyphosate. Our hypothesis is that canola will establish better and suffer less slug feeding after plowing under the alfalfa residue versus the terminating it with glyphosate. In the ‘forage’ rotation we are comparing two no-till manure management strategies prior to planting corn and canola: i. broadcasting manure on the soil surface versus, ii. shallow disk manure injection which conserves N and reduces P run-off losses. Crop rotations were initiated in spring 2010, with spring canola, and winter canola was planted in fall 2010. Spring canola yields in 2010 did not differ between the manure management treatments. A month after fall planting in 2010, winter canola planted after plowed alfalfa had 52% less slug damage and lower damage ratings than canola planted after alfalfa terminated with glyphosate. Results from 2010 and 2011 will be presented.