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Conservation tillage papers | No herbicide methods + Vegetable production + Small-scale + Soil quality

This is a remarkable collection of online proceedings
on conservation tillage for sustainable agriculture in
the Southern region.

Apparently, Auburn University has digitized and consolidated
24 years of proceedings.  Until now, online proceedings were
scattered and limited to recent years only, so it seems
worthwhile to share this website.

No-till and conservation tillage are hot topics in sustainable
agriculture.  Benefits include soil conservation, soil
improvement, and ecosystem-based pest control.

No-till is commonly geared to large-scale agronomic
crops combined with herbicides.

Yet, some of the southern agronomists have explored
methods of interest to vegetable, small-scale, and
organic/sustainable farmers.

These include:

no-till without herbicides
no-till vegetable production
cover crops
strip cropping
soil quality
insect and disease pest management
nematode pest management
sod-seeding into grass pastures

I have selected a few papers from recent meetings that
address topics of interest -- and to keep track of work
by no-till researchers like Dana Ashford, Ron Morse,
Sharad Phatak, Rolf Derpsch-- though you can certainly
find many other noteworthy papers amongst all these

Of special interest to market farmers on SANET, is
the paper by Mitchell and Elkins, "Tillage Techniques
for Gardens and Small-Scale Vegetable Production."

The mechanical roller-crimper -- in Dana Ashford's
papers -- is the tool that has revolutionized no-till in
South America, which Rolf Derpsch talks about.

The high residue cover crops -- as explained by Ron
Morse -- can provide adequate no-till weed control in
the critical early season period, if they produce a certain
about of biomass.

Keep in mind I am hoping farmers/researchers will look
at integration of thermal weed control with no-till.
It seems like a good fit, to control emerging weeds
with flame, infra-red, or steam heat as an alternative
to cultivation and herbicides.

Best wishes,

Steve Diver


Selected Papers on Conservation Tillage for Sustainable Agriculture

Southern Conservation Tillage Conference for Sustainable
Agriculture (SCTCSA)

Proceedings of SCTCSA

Proceedings from 1978 to 2002 = online


Proceedings of the 23rd Annual Southern Conservation Tillage
Conference for Sustainable Agriculture
"Agricultural Water Quality and Quantity: Issues for the 21st Century"
19-21 June, 2000, Monroe, Louisiana

Roller vs. Herbicides: An Alternative Kill Method for Cover Crops
D.L. Ashford, D.W. Reeves, M.G. Patterson, G.R. Wehtje,
M.S. Miller-Goodman

Interpretive Summary - (116 kb)

Reviewed Paper - (364 kb)


To see images of the mechanical roller-crimper in action,
download this information sheet from USDA-ARS:

"Roller vs. Herbicides: An Alternative Kill Method for Cover Crops"
USDA-ARS, National Sedimentation Laboratory,
Conservation Systems Research - Project Description 17

Also, see this online paper from Amercian Journal of Alternative
Agriculture, providing a detailed summary of research on the
mechanical roller-crimper for no-till cover crop kill.

Ashford, Dana L. and D. Wayne Reeves. 2003. Use of a
mechanical roller-crimper as an alternative kill method for
cover crops. Am. J. Alt. Ag. 18(1): 37-45.

Also see:

High-Residue, No-Till Systems for Production of Organic Broccoli
R. Morse


Proceedings of the 21st Annual Southern Conservation Tillage
Conference for Sustainable Agriculture
"Meeting the Challenges"
15-17 July, 1998, North Little Rock, Arkansas

Keys to Successful Production of Transplanted Crops in
High-Residue, No-Till Farming Systems
R. Morse


Proceedings of the 25th Annual Southern Conservation Tillage
Conference for Sustainable Agriculture
"Making Conservation Tillage Conventional: Building a
Future on 25 Years of Research"
24-26 June, 2002, Auburn, Alabama

Making Conservation Tillage Conventional: Building a Future on
25 Years of Research: Research and Extension Perspective
R. Derpsch

Tillage Techniques for Gardens and Small-Scale Vegetable Production
C.C. Mitchell, C.E. Elkins

Cover Crops and Conservation Tillage in Sustainable Vegetable
S.C. Phatak, J.R. Dozier, A.G. Bateman, K.E. Brunson, N.L. Martini

See several papers on:

Sod-Based Systems
Pest Management
Soil Quality
Cover Crops and High Residues


Proceedings of the 24th Annual Southern Conservation Tillage
Conference for Sustainable Agriculture
"Conservation Tillage: Benefiting Farmers, Society, and the
9-11 July, 2001, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

No-Herbicide, No-Till Summer Broccoli - Quantity of Rye and
Hairy Vetch Mulch on Weed Suppression and Crop Yield
R.D. Morse

Organic versus Inorganic Source and Rates of N Fertilizer for
Fall-Grown Bushbean
A.J. Marshall


Proceedings of the 20th Annual Southern Conservation Tillage
Conference for Sustainable Agriculture
"Partners for a Wholesome Food Supply"
24-26 June, 1997, Gainesville, Florida

Methods for Managing Nematodes in Sustainable Agriculture
R. McSorley, R.N. Gallaher

Lupin Hay as an Organic Fertilizer for Production of
'White Acre' Cowpea
C.E. Wieland, J.A. Widmann, R.N. Gallaher

Assessment of Soil Incorporated Crimson Clover Hay as
an Organic Fertilizer Source in the Production of Bush Bean
B.L. Wade, S.J. Rymph, R.N. Gallaher

No-Till Production of Irish Potato on Raised Beds
R.D. Morse

Effects of Farm Management on Soil Quality
E.E. Huntley, M.E. Collins, M.E. Swisher