Development and Evaluation of Minimum-Tillage Vegetable Production Systems for Western Oregon


Six on-farm trials were conducted in the Willamette Valley in 1996 to evaluate the potential for rotary strip-tillage in vegetable productions systems. In two sweet corn trials (Grover Farm and Hendricks Farm), yield of sweet corn was reduced approximately 0.5 tons/acre in the strip-tillage treatments, compared to the standard tillage practices used by the growers. In these farms, the number of tillage operations was reduced by 4-5 passes with the strip-tillage system. In two other trials involving sweet corn, (Dickman Farms and Crestview Farms), corn yield was reduced by approx. 2 and 2.5 tons/acre in the strip-till treatments compared to the standard tillage treatments. In a transplanted broccoli trial (Crestview Farm), the strip-tillage and standard tillage treatments performed comparably. In the sixth trial, involving winter squash (Stahlbush Island Farms), the November flood of 1996 carried the squash off the research plots before they could be harvested.