THE INFLUENCE OF UNDERSOWN COVER CROPS AND THEIR INCORPORATION METHODS ON SPRING WHEAT AGROPHYTOCENOSIS
Keywords:spring wheat, undersown winter cover crops, incorporation method, organic farming
Field experiment was conducted in Experimental station of Vytautas Magnus University Academy of Agriculture in 2022. Soil – Stagnic Hypocalcic Luvisol. The aim of this experiment was to indicate the influence of undersown winter cover crops of different botanical families and their incorporation methods on spring wheat agrophytocenosis in the ecological farming system. The experiment was executed by two-factor authentication. Factor A – method of incorporation of cover crops: 1. Deep ploughing (20 cm deep) in spring; 2. Shallow ploughing (6 cm deep) in spring. Factor B – undersown winter cover crops: 1. Without cover crop; 2. Crimson clover (Trifolium incarnatum) (10 kg ha-1); 3. Winter vetch (Vicia villosa) (50 kg ha-1); 4. Perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne) (10 kg ha-1); 5. Winter rye (Secale cereale) (50 kg ha-1). Weediness in the spring wheat experiment was assessed during milky ripeness of the crop. Crop density (units m-2) was counted before harvesting. Yield was calculated from completely cleaned crops with standard (14 %) crop moisture. Results demonstrated that lowest weed amount was counted in plots, where cover crop, winter vetch, was ploughed deeply in spring, though lowest dry matter of weeds was found in plots, where cover crop, crimson clover, was deeply ploughed. Highest number of productive stems of spring wheat was counted in plots, where cover crop, winter vetch, was deeply ploughed in spring for, this combination of factors also produced highest yield.