Strip till for field crop production
Four years of North Dakota corn research conducted at Carrington and Fargo in 2007-10 (Endres, Franzen and Overstreet) on fall strip till shows yields were 6 bushels per acre greater than with conventional till. At Carrington, corn was grown in 30-inch rows on a loam soil, and at the Red River Valley sites in 22-inch rows.
Dry edible beans
Dry edible bean production using strip till significantly reduces soil erosion potential compared with conventional tillage. Moisture conservation is an additional benefit in arid areas. The obvious disadvantage with strip-till beans is changing harvest strategies. Strip-till edible beans require direct harvest, which potentially increases harvest loss. However, reduced harvesting equipment, time and labor, and potentially improved seed quality may offset increased harvest losses.
Preliminary data in 2007 and 2009-10 by NDSU researchers at Carrington with fall strip-till pinto beans indicate potential for similar seed yield compared with conventionally tilled bean, and greater than with no till.
Production advantages may be gained with strip till for soybeans in arid areas because of moisture conservation, or if the crop is planted early because of warmer soils compared with no till. NDSU research during 2005-10 indicated soybean yields of 2 bushels more per acre with strip till compared with conventional till or no till (Endres, Franzen and Overstreet).
The University of Minnesota Extension conducted research in southern Minnesota comparing soybean yields in a rotation following strip-tilled corn in chisel-plowed, no-till and strip-till fields (DeJong-Hughes, Stahl). The yields in 2006 and 2008 were similar, reflecting soybean versatility in various tillage systems. In 2007, the no-till fields yielded less than the chisel-plowed and strip-tilled fields.
NDSU strip-till research with sugar beets grown in 22-inch rows was conducted during 2005-07 at several Red River Valley locations (Franzen and Overstreet, 2007). Sugar beet yields were similar among tillage systems in two of the three years. Strip-till yields were approximately the same as conventionally tilled plots.
Sunflower production using strip till is limited in the northern regions of the United States. Strip-till research trials and commercial production in Kansas show some success for sunflowers (Olson et al., 2005). Four years of NDSU strip-till research at Carrington during 2006-09 by Endres have indicated similar sunflower performance for seed yield and quality among tillage systems, including strip till.