ISSN: 0041-3216 (Online), 0041-3216 (Print)
Volume 84 Number 4
Low tillage farming strategies for resource conservation and productivity of winter sorghum [Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench] in semi-arid tropics of India: Agronomic and economic considerations. (136)
A field experiment was conducted during post-rainy (Rabi) seasons of 1998-1999 and 1999-2000 to evaluate the low tillage farming strategies on grain yield, water use efficiency, and economics of winter sorghum in the Vertisols of the northern dry zone of Karnataka State, India. Data (1998-1999 and 1999-2000 and mean) indicated that sorghum grain yield was greater under conventional tillage practices compared to reduced tillage practices. Among the low tillage treatments combined with organic materials, sorghum grain yield was greater with application of fresh green matter (Leucaena sp. loppings) followed by application of higher quantity of compost. Effective control of weeds in the plots with hand weeding over herbicide application resulted in greater winter sorghum yields. Significantly greater grain yield (1694 kg ha-1), stover yield (2.41 t ha-1), and gross returns (U.S. $213.62 ha-1) were observed in conventional tillage practices with recommended fertilizer and hand weeding, whereas, lower grain yield (930 kg ha-1) and gross returns (U.S. $125.00 ha-1) were recorded in low tillage practices with stubble of previous crop and use of herbicide. Greater net returns (U.S. $121.38 ha-1) and benefit:cost ratio (2.60) was observed in low tillage practices with green Leucaena sp. loppings application (at 2 t ha-1) and hand weeding, indicating the benefit and adaptability of low tillage practices with Leucaena sp. loppings as N source for winter sorghum in Vertisols of semiarid tropics of India.
Keywords: Low tillage practices; Leucaena sp. toppings; Gross returns; Net returns; Benefit:Cost ratio