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Archive | November, 2013

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Weed Control with Flame Cultivation

University of Massachusetts scientists designed a study using flame cultivation (FC) techniques for weed control in cranberry crops. The results, published in HortScience, show promise for integrating the weed control technique into “certain situations,” including organic farming. The team tested three types of handheld propane torches and varying exposure times on several species of perennial […]

Potatoes being harvested in the San Luis Valley of south-central Colorado. Rotating potatoes with cover crops provides many benefits, including nitrogen management, improved soil and water quality, and bigger potatoes and higher yields.

Three-Year Rotations Best For Potatoes

Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists have been investigating new cost-efficient options for increasing yields of potatoes and improving production sustainability. The researchers determined that three-year crop rotations generally helped break the host-pathogen cycle more effectively than two-year rotations. The three-year rotations provided better disease control and resulted in higher crop yields. These rotations also supported […]

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Crop Rotation: 7 Steps to Enhance Your Soil Life

Crop rotation has been used since Roman times to improve plant nutrition and to control the spread of disease. A study published in Nature’s The ISME Journal reveals the profound effect crop rotation has on enriching soil with bacteria, fungi and protozoa. Crop rotation simply means changing the type of crop grown on a particular piece […]

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Forages Affect Cattle Weight, Taste

Clemson University Experiment Station, Extension Service and College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences conducted a two-year experiment feeding Angus steers various forages, each enclosed in five-acre lots planted with alfalfa, Bermuda grass, chicory, cowpea or pearl millet. They reported their findings in the Journal of the American Society of Animal Science. The report revealed […]

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Earthworms Escape Drought Underground

Earthworms use water for many things — for respiration, to keep their bodies from drying out and to make the mucus that helps them slide through the soil. When soils get dry, earthworms go into estivation. “During estivation, earthworms wrap their bodies into a tight knot to reduce the amount of surface area exposed to […]