Effects of Five Years Adoption of No-Tillage Systems for Vegetables Crops in Soil Organic Matter Contents

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Vegetables productions systems are done normally with intense soil tillage causing a strong decline of soil quality. Use of conservation systems can be an alternative to recover this quality. In order to evaluate the effects of such systems on soil organic matter, an experiment has been conducted in randomized blocks design and factorial scheme 3 × 2: three soil management systems (no-tillage; reduced tillage and conventional tillage) and two cover crops (maize single; and intercropping maize with gray velvet bean—Stizolobium niveum); and repeated measures over time. Soil samples were collected before the implementation of the experiment and at the end of each crop cycle until the fifth crop cycle. Carbon associated with humic substances is also determined in 0 - 5 cm, 5 - 10 cm and 10 - 30 cm at the end of the last crop cycle. The SOM content was higher in RT (48.34 g·kg-1) than in the CT (39.48 g·kg-1) at the end of the fifth crop cycle. SOM content in NT (44.92 g·kg-1) was statistically equal to RT and CT, during the same period. In 0 - 5 cm, carbon contents associated to the humic substances present the same behavior of SOM contents in 0 - 10 cm. Probably these results are associated with the capacity of each system to improve superficial contents of SOM stable fractions. It follows that the conservation systems used are alternatives to the cultivation vegetables in order to improve soil organic matter contents.

Carlos E. P. Lima
ítalo M. R. Guedes
Juscimar da Silva
Flávia A. Alcântara
Nuno R. Madeira
Agnaldo D. F. Carvalho
Mariana R. Fontenelle
Agricultural Sciences