Archive | 11th Technical Report (2005&2006)

Summary of the 16th and 17th years of WICST as well as Linking Farms, Grass Ley and Organic Crop production studies.

WICST 11th Technical Report -full

The WICST 11th Technical Report covers the 2005 and 2006 cropping seasons and also includes some on-farm trials including soil test P and K trend analysis on a grazing farm, and manure use on cash-grain farms.  Printed July 2008.  213 pages. More »

Linking Dairy and Cash-Grain Farms in Wisconsin via Manure Transfer for Use in Grain Production: Corn (Zea Mays L.) Yield, Environmental Effects, and Implementation Constraints

ABSTRACT: One relatively under-utilized manure management strategy employed by dairy farmers is to transport and apply manure onto the fields of nearby grain farmers. While this system offers advantages to both parties, little of the existing research on manure management has been conducted on grain farms. As part of a larger effort to [...] More »

Organic and Conventional Production Systems in the Wisconsin Integrated Cropping Systems Trial: II. Economic and Risk Analysis 1993-2006

This article, the second in a series looking at the Wisconsin Integrated Cropping Systems Trial (WICST), reports on the profitability of six conventional and organic systems, with a focus on net returns and associated risk exposure. Several pricing scenarios were compared to evaluate the impact of government programs and organic price premiums. When net return [...] More »

Addressing Organic Corn and Soybean Plant Populations in WICST

An important strategy for obtaining economic yields is ensuring good stand establishment. In conventional systems, in addition to using high quality seed, farmers rely on effective chemical seed treatments to help ensure vigorous stands. For a number of years, however, the WICST organic plots have had difficulties in achieving target populations of corn [...] More »

Summary of Corn Yields on WICST “Prairie” Corn Plots: 2001-2006

In the spring of 1999 two tall-grass prairie treatments were established in what had previously been a grass waterway in the southern tier of the WICST plots at the Arlington Research Station. The purpose of the prairie plots was to create a native grasslands benchmark for the environmental variables being monitored on the WICST plots. [...] More »

Analysis of WICST Cropping System-5 Alfalfa K Fertilization Trial

After approximately 15 years, several plots in the organic dairy rotation (CS5; corn-oats/alfalfa-alfalfa) of WICST have soil test K (STK) levels that have decreased to the optimum level or below so alfalfa yield may be limited. This is despite manure applications in 2 out of 3 years of this rotation. Potassium sulfate (K2SO4) [...] More »

Comparison of WICST Forage Systems: Productivity and Profitability from 2004-2006

The dairy industry is undergoing rapid change within Wisconsin (CIAS 2005; PATS 2005). In addition to the trend of increasing animal concentration and custom feed production, other producers are looking to alternative markets such as grass-fed and organic labels to increase their profitability. Each strategy implies a somewhat different forage production approach. [...] More »

Flame Weeding Corn on the WICST Plots

Good weed control is crucial in organic systems. However, erosion is a concern with the high tillage intensity inherent to organic row crop production. It’s also known that tillage and cultivation can bring up buried weed seed and stimulate weed seed germination. A lower disturbance option for controlling weeds is to combine [...] More »

Evaluation of Seed Treatments for Organic Corn - 2006

In 2003, to comply with the National Organic Program (NOP) standards, we started using certified organic seed (untreated, non-GMO) for our organically managed systems on the WICST plots. In both organic systems (CS3 & CS5), the corn phase followed a plowdown legume, typically tilled the previous fall. Even with delayed planting we consistently [...] More »

Using Rye as a Cover Crop in Organic Soybeans

This report was the result of an independent project that includes a literature review on using rye as a mulch and an allelopathic crop.  It was the prelude to a Master Degree project using on-farm and on-station plots. Author: Emily Bernstein More »