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SALINE SOILS UNDER DRYLAND AGRICULTURE IN SOUTHEASTERN SASKATCHEWAN (CANADA) AND POSSIBILITIES FOR THEIR IMPROVEMENT: PART II. EVALUATION OF EFFECTS OF VARIOUS TREATMENTS ON SOIL SALINITY AND CROP YIELD

H. LÜKEN
Plant and Soil
Vol. 17, No. 1 (August 1962), pp. 26-48
Published by: Springer
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/42946625
Page Count: 23
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SALINE SOILS UNDER DRYLAND AGRICULTURE IN SOUTHEASTERN SASKATCHEWAN (CANADA) AND POSSIBILITIES FOR THEIR IMPROVEMENT: PART II. EVALUATION OF EFFECTS OF VARIOUS TREATMENTS ON SOIL SALINITY AND CROP YIELD
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Abstract

Yields of wheat, when grown on saline soil under dryland conditions were increased by treatments such as mulch, manure, high rates of nitrogen and phosphorus fertilizers in combination or alone and by Krilium. On the other hand, all treatments, with the exception of Krilium, had no effect on the salinity concentrations of the 0-6 inch soil layer. It was concluded that all three factors, namely fertility improvement, structure improvement, and moisture perservation contributed towards higher yields on saline soil. The return, however, as evidenced from field and growth room experiments, was decreasing with increasing salinity. This reduction in responsiveness, which is significant for practical agriculture, was ascribed mainly to a reduction in the availability of nutrients to plants when grown on saline soils. An investigation into the water— salinity— plant-growth relationship showed that the summer fallow method favours salt accumulation in the soil surface horizon. Evaporation from the bare soil surface was lower on saline than on nonsaline soils which will lead to an accelerated salinization due to prolonged capillary flow. The water-use efficiencies of plants decreased with increasing salinity and, in relation to phosphorus levels, varied proportionally to the amounts of green weights produced. Mean yields and mean salinities markedly changed during the course of the experiment as the result of climatic conditions. Variations in ionic composition of soil solutions as the result of their concentrations were evidenced, but these were not affected by the treatments. Determinations of germination, rate of emergence, and thousand-kernel weights of wheat in relation to salinity and treatments provided additional information. Die Wirkung von Maßnahmen zur chemischen und physikalischen Verbesserung von Salzböden sowie die Effekte von Verdunstungsschutz in Form von Mulch wurden auf versalzten Böden im "dryland farming" Gebiet von Südost Saskatchewan an Hand von chemischen Analysen und Pflanzenerträgen geprüft. Hierbei zeigte sich, daß Bodenbehandlungen wie Mulch, Stallmist, hohe Gaben von Stickstoff und Phosphor allein oder kombiniert und Krilium die Erträge von Weizen auf Salzböden zu steigern vermochten. Auf der anderen Seite bewirkten aber diese Behandlungen, mit Ausnahme von Krilium, keine Verringerung der Salzgehalte der obersten Bodenschicht. Es wurde gefolgert, daß die Ertragszunahmen auf Grund der angewandten Bodenbehandlungen (mit Ausnahme von Krilium) auf einer Verbesserung von Wachstumsfaktoren und nicht auf einer Salzverringerung beruhen. Somit wurde die ursprünglich gestellte Frage über die Art der Wirksamkeit der angewandten Mittel beantwortet.

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