- Vegetables: sweet potatoes
- Crop Production: no-till, strip tillage
- Pest Management: weed ecology
Sweet potato is an economically important crop for North Carolina growers. Current sweet potato production systems rely heavily on cultivation. The lack of chemical and non-chemical weed control methods further increases reliance on cultivation. Excessive cultivation is detrimental to soil health. Reduced and strip-tillage cover crop systems have the potential to reduce reliance on cultivation and herbicides by providing an alternative weed control method. These systems also increase soil organic matter content and soil structure. A study will be conducted to evaluate the effect of these systems on soil, crop growth, and yield. Another study will be conducted to evaluate conventional and organic weed control programs in these systems. At the conclusion of these studies, the knowledge gained will be disseminated to growers and the broader research community.
Project objectives from proposal:
- Determine how a reduced-tillage and strip-tillage production system influence sweet potato growth compared to a conventional tillage system.
- Develop weed management programs in reduced and strip-tillage systems. Determine how a reduced-and strip-tillage system respond under intense weed pressure with and without herbicides.
- Disseminate lessons learned and recommendations through grower meetings, extension articles, and refereed journal articles.