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Effects of bulk density on soil resistance and tobacco yield

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  • Save International Journal of Plant Research 2016, 6(2): 21-24 DOI: 10.5923/j.plant.20160602.01 Influence of Bulk Density on Soil Resistance and Yield of Tobacco Ivan Turšić1,*, Milan Mesić2, Ivica Kisić2, Aleksandar Racz3 1Tobacco Institute Zagreb, Croatia 2Faculty of Agriculture, University of Zagreb, Croatia 3University of Applied Health Sciences, Zagreb, Croatia Abstract Influence of soil compaction on the growth and development of flue-cured tobacco was investigated at the experimental station of the Tobacco institute Zagreb. Research was carried out in model trials, in Mitscherlich's pots. Three soil compaction levels (1.2, 1.4 and 1.6 gcm-3) were randomized according to the block method with four replications. The soil used in the trials was the plough Iayer of Luvisol, the soil typical of the area in which flue-cured tobacco is grown in Croatia. Tobacco was picked in six harvests, and after the sixth harvest the tobacco root yield was determined by washing it out in a sieve. The soil resistance to penetration was measured during tobacco flowering, and a statistically significant increase of soil resistance (compaction) was recorded in the soil with medium and the highest bulk density compared to that with the Iowest density, increased soil compaction considerably reduced leaf yields and root development of tobacco. Tobacco leaf and root yields were significantly increased by intensified fertilization. The highest leaf and root yields were obtained in the lowest soil compaction. Keywords Soil compaction, Soil resistance, Root development, Yield of tobacco 1. Introduction In Croatia, flue-cured tobacco is grown on sandy and silty loam soils in the River Drava valley. Frequent high contents of silt particles and fine sand in the soil mechanical composition, as well as shallow tillage, influenced an increase in soil compaction in the plough and sub-plough layers. High soil compaction caused reduced root development and lower tobacco leaf yields. Akehurst (1981), Hawks (1970), emphasize that flue-cured tobacco should be grown on loose soils, with a low content of organic matter, total and mineral nitrogen, slightly acid reaction (pH 5.5-6.0) and a rather light mechanical composition. The high content of fine sand and silt particles in the flue-cured tobacco production area in northern Croatia causes frequent crust formation and increased compaction of the plough layer (Butorac, Bašić, 1990). Also sub-plough horizons have increased compaction (bulk density) and reduced permeability due to the unfavourable ratio of macro and micro pores, as well as years-long shallow soil tillage (Turšić et al. 1994, Racz, Butorac et al. 1983, Soane and Ouwerkerk 1994). Lower tobacco yields are a result of soil compaction and increased bulk density, which often impedes the * Corresponding author: (Ivan Turšić) Published online at Copyright © 2016 Scientific & Academic Publishing. All Rights Reserved development of tobacco roots into deeper soil layers (Turšić, 1992). Fertilization applied to soils of increased compaction had lower efficiency upon the yield and quality of flue-cured tobacco. Tobacco yield depends on the volume of soil in which its roots develop and from which it takes up the required nutrients. Soil compaction is often a limiting factor in tobacco production and it cannot be solved by intensified fertilization (Butorac et al., 1992, Turšić et al., 1994). The research goal was to determine the influence of soil compaction on the root development and yield of flue-cured tobacco. 2. Materials and Methods The investigation was carried out in the greenhouse of Faculty of Agriculture in Zagreb over the period of two years. Three levels of soil compaction were investigated (Table 1). Table 1. Treatments of Trial Bulk density gcm-3 kg soil per pot 1.2 14.4 1.4 18.8 1.6 19.2 Soil compaction was measured in Mitscherlich vegetation pots of 12 dm3. The field test was carried out according to block method in four repetitions. During tobacco flowering 22 Ivan Turšić et al.: Influence of Bulk Density on Soil Resistance and Yield of Tobacco period after topping, soil mechanical resistance was measured as well as soil moisture. Tobacco was harvested six times. The yield was measured after drying of tobacco leaves. The root weight was measured at all three soil compaction levels. The results were analysed by analysis of variance. 3. Results content in plough upper layers. The soil has low organic content, medium nitrogen level and good phosphorus and potassium level. The soil has acidic pH reaction (Turšić et al. 2005). The results of field trials were confirmed by the trials in Mitscherlich vegetation pots in the greenhouse (Butorac et al. 1992, Turšić 1992). The increased soil compaction has significantly increased soil compaction (Table 4). The trial soil was silty loam. It's bulk density in Ap horizon amounts 1.46 gcm-3 (Table 2, Picture 1). Picture 2. Influence of soil compaction on the growth of tobacco Picture 1. Soil type (Luvisol) The soil is subject to crust development, compaction because of 37% of silty particles and 30% of fine sand The limiting values of soil mechanical resistance on tobacco root growth are between 2 and 5 MPa (Racz and Butorac, 1983, Butorac and Bašić, 1990, Soane and Ouwerkerk, 1994). In this investigation higher values of soil resistance were measured where bulk density was 1,4 and 1,6 gcm-3. This lead to higher micropore content which has reduced aeration and soil water permeability. Reduced soil aeration and water infiltration has reduced the growth and development of tobacco root system and nutrients apsorption (Turšić et al. 2012). The increase of volume weight from 1,2 gcm-3 to 1,4 and 1,6 gcm-3 has decreased the root weight by 26,81% and 48,09% (Table 4). Table 2. Main characteristics of the investigated soil Depth cm Texture 0-28 Silty loam Bulk density gcm-3 1.46 Humus % pH in H2O Total nitrogen % 1.10 5.1 0.09 Available P2O5 K2O mg / 100 g 14.3 21.4 Specific bulk density of soil gcm-3 1.2 1.4 1.6 LSD, 5% Table 3. Effect of bulk density on specific resistance of soil, MPa 2009 Soil resistance Soil water content % 1.83 14.68 5.10 13.15 8.76 13.10 0.72 N.S. 2010 Soil Soil water resistance content % 1.69 13.43 4.50 13.10 7.44 11.13 0.84 1.81 Average Soil resistance Soil water content % 1.76 14.06 4.80 13.63 8.10 12.12 International Journal of Plant Research 2016, 6(2): 21-24 23 g per pot MPa R2=0.9823 90 9 80 8 70 7 60 6 50 5 40 4 30 3 20 2 10 1 0 0 1.2 1.4 1.6 Bulk density, gcm-3 Yield, g per rot Root development, g per rot Soil resistance, MPa Graph 1. Influence of bulk density on soil resistance, root development and yield of tobacco Table 4. Effect of bulk density of soil on root development Specific bulk density of soil gcm-3 Root, g per pot 2009 2010 Average growth and development of flue-cured tobacco roots 3. Increase of soil bulk density from 1.2 to 1.4 and 1.6 gcm-3 led to significant decrease of tobacco leaf yield. 1.2 53.7 48.4 51.05 1.4 1.6 LSD, 5% 38.4 36.3 37.35 REFERENCES 29.7 19.4 24.55 11.6 6.4 [1] Akehurst, B.C. 1981. Tobacco. Second edition. Longman Inc., London, New York, pp 282-315. This lead to lower leaf yield by 28,3% and 41,6% in first year as well as 25,4% and 43,6% in second year of investigation (Table 5, Picture 2 and Graph 1). Table 5. Effect of bulk density on yield of tobacco, g per rot Specific bulk density of soil gcm-3 1.2 1.4 1.6 Yield, g per pot 2009 2010 78.4 65.3 56.2 48.7 45.7 36.8 Average 77.85 52.45 41.25 [2] Butorac, A., Bašić, F. 1990. Antropogeno zbijanje tla i mogući načini njihovog uklanjanja ili ublažavanja. Agronomski glasnik 1-2: 43-66. [3] Butorac, A., Bašić, F., Turšić, I., Mesić, M. 1992. The response of some field crops to soil compaction. International Conference Soil Compaction and Soil Management, Tallin, Estonia, Proceedings, 273-283. [4] Hawks, S.N. 1970. Principles of flue-cured tobacco production. N.C. State University, Raleigh, 58-203. [5] Racz, Z., Butorac, A. 1983. Utjecaj zbijenosti tla na rast, razvoj i prinos nekih kultura. Polj. zn. smotra 62: 491-500. LSD, 5% 11.6 9.9 [6] Soane, B.D., Ouwerkerk, C. 1994. Soil compaction in crop production. Elsevier, Amsterdam, London, New York, Tokyo, This investigation has confirmed that higher soil pp 365-390. compaction and unfavorable ratio of macro and micro pores [7] Turšić, I. 1992. Influence of the depth of ploughing on the soil have limiting impact on tobacco yield. compaction and tobacco yield in northern Croatia. International Conference Soil Compaction and Soil 4. Conclusions Management, Tallin, Estonia, Proceedings, pp 243-253. [8] Turšić, I., Butorac, A., Bašić, F. 1994. Influence of tillage and 1. Increased soil bulk density led to increased soil resistance 2. Increased soil resistance decreased significantly the fertilizing on root development and yield of virginia tobacco in northern Croatia. Proceedings of 13th International Conference, International Soil Tillage Research Organization, Denmark, 699-704. 24 Ivan Turšić et al.: Influence of Bulk Density on Soil Resistance and Yield of Tobacco [9] Turšić, I., Butorac, A., Bašić, F., Čavlek, M., Mesić, M., Đaković, Z., Kisić, I., Tratnik, M., Svitlica, B. 2005. Effect of fifteen years of tobacco production in monoculture and crop rotation upon the yield and quality of flue-cured tobacco in agroecological conditions of Croatia. Die Bodenkultur. 56(2005), 3:117-120. [10] Turšić, I., Šimunić, I., Mesić, M., Kisić, I. 2012. Effects of tillage on tobacco yield in the Republic of Croatia. 19. ISTRO Conf. 24-28. Sept 2012. Montevideo, Urugway.

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