Case study 14b

Case Study 14b


Contrasting minimum tillage with inversion tillage in wheat fields. Boreal (Finland)

Which problem will be solved
Organic agriculture relies on mouldboard ploughing for weed control. Inversion tillage and related overwinter fallow is seen to be detrimental to soil organisms and soil health, but the results are not conclusive. The case study will provide results on what happens to soil health when a continuous plant cover crop rotation with shallow tillage is interrupted by mouldboard ploughing.

State of the art
Minimum tillage and direct drilling are not common practices in organic farming but could be utilized with a crimper roller and continuous crop cover.

To study differences between minimum tillage and ploughing on soil properties and microbiology on organic farming system.
Proposed management practices
The test fields have been managed with organic farming with continuous plant cover and minimum tillage. The experimental plots will be ploughed and the control will continue with developed minimum tillage practices.
Progress with the case study in relation with the state of the art
Minimum tillage is presented as a key method for improving soil biological diversity and functioning.

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