F. C. (Frederick Charles) Bauer.

Crop yields from Illinois soil experiment fields in 1933 together with a general summary for the four-year period ending in 1933 online

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THE UNIVERSITY

OF ILLINOIS

LIBRARY

G30-7



.



UWVERSHY

i "TttRE LTBRARY



CIRCULATING



CHECK FOR UNBOUND
CIRCULATING COPY



Crop Yields From Illinois

Soil Experiment Fields

in 1933

Together With a General Summary for the
Four- Year Period Ending in 1933



By F. C. BAUER




Results from twenty-six fields are given
in this bulletin



UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS

AGRICULTURAL EXPERIMENT STATION

BULLETIN 402

(May, 1934)



CONTENTS
INTRODUCTION PA< 39

PART I. ROTATION SUMMARIES 42

Variations in Natural Productivity Levels 42

Response to Manure 44

Response to Crop Residues 45

Response to Limestone 47

Four-Ton Limestone Application Has Long-Time Effect 48

Response to Phosphate 49 .

Response to Potash 51

Response to Limestone, Phosphate, Potash 51

Net Value of Crop Increases 53

Net Values for Total Yields 53

Most Effective Systems of Soil Treatment 55

Effect of Soil Treatment on Productivity Level 56

Relation of Soil Treatment to Crop Quality 57

PART II. CROP YIELDS FOR 1933 60

Aledo 60

Antioch 61

Bloomington 61

Carlinville 62-63

Carthage 63-65

Clayton 65-66

Dixon 66-67

Elizabethtown 67

Enfield 68

Ewing 69-71

Hartsburg 71-72

Joliet 72-73

Kewanee 74-75

Lebanon 76-78

McNabb 78

Minonk 79

Mt. Morris 80-^1

Newton 81-82

Oblong 83

Oquawka 83

Raleigh 84

Sparta 85-86

Toledo 87-88

Unionville 89

Urbana, Morrow Plots 90

Urbana, South Farm 90-91

West Salem 91

INDEX TO FERTILIZER AND TREATMENT MATERIALS.. . 91-92



Urbana. Illinois May, 1934

Publications in the Bulletin series report the results of investigations
made by or sponsored by the Experiment Station



Crop Yields From Illinois Soil
Experiment Fields in 1933

Together With a General Summary for the Four-Year
Period Ending in 1933

By F. C. BAUER, Chief, Soil Experiment Fields

IOILS are somewhat like growing and aging human beings. Their
ability to perform, that is to produce crops, and their require-
ments for producing crops are constantly changing. The rapidity
with which these changes take place depends, in a broad sense, on the
quality of the materials from which a soil is formed, on the intensity
of the weathering forces acting on these materials, and on the care
exercised in management and treatment. Frequently these influences
tend to impoverish soils and thus reduce performance. A successful
agriculture cannot be established on impoverished soils.

Soil management and treatment practices properly employed can
do much to reduce variation in soil productivity and to uncover latent
productivity that may exist. No single system of management or
treatment, however, can be expected to give the best results on all soils,
nor can a system that is effective on a particular soil at a particular
time be expected to give the best results for all time to come. Systems
of management and treatment must be adapted to the widely differing
nature of soils and to their changing needs. Broadly speaking, farmers
are interested in the simplest system of management that will give the
most satisfactory results.

In order to test the effectiveness of different systems of soil treat-
ment on the yields of farm crops, the Illinois Agricultural Experiment
Station for a number of years has conducted field investigations in
many sections of the state on extensive soil types differing widely in
productiveness. Investigations along this line have been in progress
at Urbana since 1876. The first of the present outlying soil experi-
ment fields were established in the fall of 1901. Some of the original
fields are still in operation ; some have been discontinued at one time
or another for various reasons. During the crop season of 1933
twenty-six fields were in operation.

Complete records from all the Illinois soil experiment fields up to
and including 1924 were reported in Bulletin 273. Subsequent results
have been reported annually in bulletin form. The present bulletin is

39



40 BULLETIN No. 402 [May,

a continuation of this series. In the earlier bulletins the crop yields
were presented merely as a matter of record, without comment or dis-
cussion. In order, however, to give a better picture of the results as a
whole, a general summary of the last rotation period on each field has
been included in the more recent reports. In this bulletin a summary
for the four-year period ending in 1933 is included as Part I. The
crop yields for 1933 are presented in Part II.

The tables in Part II, in addition to giving the 1933 yields for each
crop in each series under each treatment, record the average yields of
all crops for each treatment system in terms of pounds of digestible
nutrients and indicate the ratio between the yields produced under
treatment and those grown under no treatment. By means of the
average yield figures one can readily observe the influence of any
particular soil treatment in terms of all crops; while the ratio figures
give one a direct measure of the relative importance of the various
treatment systems in comparison with no treatment, the yields from
the untreated plots being placed at 1.000. If one is interested in per-
centage increases, he can readily determine them by subtracting 1.000
from any ratio figure and moving the decimal point two places to the
right. Land left untreated as a check for the purpose of determining
the value of the various treatment systems is provided by Plot 1 in
the manure systems and Plot 5 in the residues systems.

An index to the yields obtained with different fertilizer and treat-
ment materials is given on page 91.

Explanation of Symbols

The following symbols are used in the tables to denote the soil
treatments applied:

= No soil treatment.

M = Manure. One ton for each ton of crops grown is usually applied once in
four years for the corn crop.

R = Crop residues. Cornstalks, green-manure sweet clover, second-crop red

clover, etc., are plowed into the soil.

L = Limestone. For most fields limestone has been applied in amounts equiv-
alent to 700 to 800 pounds an acre annually. In the future, applications
are to be made when the need for them appears

K = Potash. For many years kainit at the annual acre-rate of 200 pounds was
used. Now muriate of potash is used at the rate of 100 pounds an acre
for each corn and wheat crop.
KC1 = Muriate of potash.
rP = Rock phosphate. For most fields rock phosphate has been applied in

amounts equivalent to 350 to 400 pounds an acre annually.
sP = Superphosphate. Rates vary with the experiment. In general the rates
approximate half the rock-phosphate rate.



1934] CROP YIELDS FROM ILLINOIS SOIL EXPERIMENT FIELDS IN 1933 41

bP = Bone phosphate. Applications are similar to those of superphosphate.

N = Nitrogen. The carrier and the rates of application vary with the experi-
ment. Facts are given with the data.

( ) = Tons. To differentiate ton yields from bushel yields, the figures denoting
tons are placed in parentheses.

Soil Groups Represented 1

The results reported on pages 60 to 91 are for individual fields
arranged alphabetically rather than by location or soil types. The gen-
eral character of the soils represented by these fields is indicated by
the following classification. The dates given indicate the years in
which the various fields were established.

Croup Location Year

No. Description of Soil of field established

1. Dark soils with heavy, noncalcareous subsoils

Semimature Bloomington 1902

| Aledo 1910

Young \ Hartsburg 1911

( Minonk 1910

2. Dark soils with impervious, calcareous subsoils

Young (due to erosion) Joliet 1914

3. Dark soils with noncalcareous subsoils

Semimature Urbana 1876

Young Kewanee 1915

4. Dark soils with open, noncalcareous subsoils

Sen-imature. . {M, X Morris !'!o

Young McNabb 1907

5. Dark soils with impervious, noncalcareous subsoils

( Carthage 1911

Semimature ] Clayton 1911

( Lebanon 1910

Mature Carlinville 1910

7. Gray soils with impervious noncalcareous subsoils

Old (moderately well drained) { gJf g } jj|

f Newton 1912

Old (poorly drained; slick spots numerous) i Raleigh 1910

I Toledo 1913

Old (very poorly drained; slick spots numerous) .... Sparta 1916

8. Yellow soils with noncalcareous subsoils

f Enfield 1912

Mature { Unionville 1911

I West Salem 1912
11. Brownish yellow soils with calcareous subsoils

Young Antioch 1902

14. Sandy loams and sands

Semimature Oquawka 1915

16. Hilly land

Mature . Elizabethtown 1917



'Classification prepared by R. S. Smith, Chief in Soil Physics and Soil
Survey.



42 BULLETIN No. 402 [May,

PART I. ROTATION SUMMARIES

IT If NHE SUMMARIES on the following pages indicating, mostly in
terms of money values, the results from soil treatments on the
^ Illinois soil experiment fields during the four-year period ending
in 1933, give a clearer conception of the influence of the treatments
than can be obtained by studying each field or each year independently.
A very condensed form of summary is used. The crop yields for the
four-year period have been averaged and converted to money values.
These money values have in turn been reduced to an annual acre-basis.
For those fields on which a four-year rotation is practiced and each
crop is grown every year, an arrangement which prevails on most
fields, this procedure condenses 16 crop yields into one figure. Such
figures make it possible to see at a glance the relative advantage of
any particular treatment for the four-year period.

The crop prices on which these figures are based are the after-
harvest prices of crops on Illinois farms as reported by the federal
government. Each year's crop yields were figured at the prices for
that particular year before the average was computed. Averaging
these prices for the four-year period ending in 1933 gives the follow-
ing figures: corn, 38 cents; oats, 22 cents; wheat, 60 cents a bushel;
mixed hay, $8.27; clover hay, $9.22 and alfalfa, $12.25 a ton.

Where deductions were made for the cost of treatment applied,
crop residues were figured as costing 75 cents an acre annually, and
manure, limestone, rock phosphate, and kainit at 75 cents, $3, $15, and
$30 a ton respectively. Under average conditions these prices should
cover the cost of application as well as purchase.

When studying experimental results such as these in terms of
money values, one should keep in mind that the above crop prices are
the lowest reported for many years. At such prices increases in yield
may appear somewhat insignificant when in reality they are of con-
siderable importance from the point of view of crop response to soil
treatment and of soil improvement.

Variations in Natural Productivity Levels

Illinois soils vary greatly in their natural productivity. This is
evident from the results obtained from the untreated land on the
twenty-five soil experiment fields listed in Table 1. The annual acre-
value of the crops grown during the last rotation ranged from $2.00 at
Ewing to $21.42 at McNabb. Values for the other fields are dis-
tributed more or less regularly between these two extremes.



1934] CROP YIELDS FROM ILLINOIS SOIL EXPERIMENT FIELDS IN 1933



43



TABLE 1. UNTREATED LAND: VALUE OF ALL CROPS GROWN ON UNTREATED

LAND OF TWENTY-FIVE ILLINOIS SOIL EXPERIMENT FIELDS, AND PRODUCTIVITY

LEVEL OF EACH FIELD EXPRESSED AS A PERCENTAGE OF THE AVERAGE

PRODUCTIVITY LEVEL OF FIVE FIELDS HAVING GOOD PRODUCTIVE LEVELS*
(Values represent average annual acre-returns for the four-year period ending in 1933)







Section




Produc-


Rank Field


County


of


Value


tivity






state




level


Darker colored soils








perct.


1 McNabb


Putnam


NW


$21.42


134


2 Aledo


Mercer


NW


17.75


111


3 Dixon


Lee


NW


16.52


103


4 Kewanee


Henry


NW


16.40


102


5 Mt. Morris


Ogle


NW


15.08


95


6 Hartsburg


Logan


C


14.80


92


7 Minonk


Woodford


c


14.18


89


8 Carthage


Hancock


w


14.03


88


9 Lebanon


St. Clair


sw


12.52


78


10 Clayton


Adams


w


12.07


75


1 1 Bloomington


McLean


c


11.52


72


12 Joliet


Will


NE


9.99


62


13 Carlinville


Macoupin


NSW


8.68


54


14 Antioch


Lake


NE


8.05


50


Sand soil










15 Oquawka


Henderson


W


7.17


45


Lighter colored soils










16 Oblong


Crawford


ESE


4.38


27


17 Toledo


Cumberland


ESE


4.23


26


18 Enfield


White


SE


3.52


22


19 Unionville


Massac


SE


3.26


20


20 Newton


Jasper


SE


2.78


17


21 West Salem


Edwards


SE


2.54


16


22 Raleigh


Saline


SE


2.30


14


23 Elizabethtown


Hardin


SE


2.23


14


24 Sparta


Randolph


SW


2.20


14


25 Ewing


Franklin


SE


2.00


12



'The average value of the crops for the above period from the Aledo, Dixon,
Kewanee, Mt. Morris, and Hartsburg fields, which are representative of soils of good
productive levels, was $16 an acre. This value is therefore taken to represent 100
percent in the last column.

When the productivity levels of the respective fields are expressed
as percentage variations from $16, the average value for the crops
grown on the Aledo, Dixon, Kewanee, Mt. Morris and Hartsburg
fields, which may be taken as representing soils of good productivity,
comparisons may be quickly made. If these values are correlated with
the soil groups listed on page 41, some interesting relationships become
apparent. The darker-colored soils, for instance, range in productivity
levels from 50 to 134 percent of the level of the soils of good produc-
tivity. The lighter-colored soils range from 12 to 27 percent, which is
about one-fifth the level of the darker-colored soils. The sand soils



44



BULLETIN No. 402



occupy a middle position at a 45-percent level,
graphical presentation of these facts.)



[May,
(See page 56 for a



Response to Manure

In livestock systems of farming the amount of manure that can be
produced and returned to the soil depends upon the productiveness of
the soil. Tests show that when one-third of the produce grown is sold

TABLE 2. MANURE: AMOUNTS APPLIED TO SOIL IN THREE SYSTEMS OF LIVESTOCK

FARMING AND RETURNS FROM IT WHEN USED ALONE

(For the four- year period ending in 1933)

Amounts applied annually per acre Value when used alone



Rank Field


Alone


With
limestone


With lime-
stone and
rock phos-
phate


Ton
value


Annual
acre-
value


1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23


Dixon


tc
3


ms
01
.34
40
92
89
43
17
68
00 l
61
09
,77
12
43
96
.95
.70
09
29
.73
.89
.81
59


tons
3.18
2.97
3.93
2.50
3.14
2.16
2.84
3.10
1.35
3.06
3.47
1.67
2.20
2.36
1.87
2.06
2.19
2.41
3.30
1.30
2.07
1.60


tons
3.23
3.08
3.91
2.47
3.33
2.18
3.00
3.00
1.65
3.30
3.41
2.19
2.09
2.51
1.94
2.26
2.25
2.75
3.25
1.29
2.23
1.56
3. 71*


$2
2
1
2
1
3
2
1
4
1
1
4
2
2
2
2
3
1

2
1
1


.51
.25
.49
.84
67
.22
03
.63
.33
.66
.27
41
.74
00
87
.68
.48
01
60
30
,75
65
05


$7
5
5
4
4
4
4
4
4
4
3
3
3
2
2
2
2
2
1
1
1
1


.55
.26
.07
.98
.82
.60
.40
.37
.33
.32
.91
.40
.07
.85
.76
.47
.44
.10
.97
.68
.56
.34
.18


Clayton


2


Aledo


3


Lebanon


1


Kewanee


2


Oquawka


1


Carlinville


2


Mt. Morris


2


West Salem


1


Carthage


2


Hartsburg


3


Elizabethtown ....




Toledo


1


Oblong


1


Raleigh




Newton




Ewing




Joliet


2


Minonk


3


Unionville




Enfield




Sparta




McNabb


.. 3



l Light lime application, 4 tons, made in 1912. *No limestone.

and two-thirds fed, and allowance is made for one-fifth of the manure
to be lost before it can be returned to the land, then for every ton of
crops grown one ton of manure containing 25 percent of dry matter
and 75 percent moisture can be returned to the soil. When manure
was applied to the respective experiment fields on this basis, the
amount returned annually per acre, when no supplementary treatments
were used, ranged from about 4 ton on the least productive soils to



1934] CROP YIELDS FROM ILLINOIS SOIL EXPERIMENT FIELDS IN 1933 45

about 3}/ tons on the most productive soils, as may be seen from an
inspection of Table 2. With supplementary treatments consisting of
either limestone, or limestone and phosphate, the amount of manure
returned to the soil on each field was increased, but the extremes in
the range of the amounts applied were not greatly different from what
they were when no supplementary treatments were used.

The application of manure in the manner described increased the
crop yields on all fields. Rather marked differences occurred, how-
ever, in the size of the increases on the respective fields. The value
of the crop increases where manure alone was used ranged from 18
cents an acre annually at McNabb on a highly productive dark-colored
soil to $7.55 an acre at Dixon on a soil of good productivity. In a
similar manner the ton-value of the manure applied ranged from 5
cents at McNabb to $4.41 at Elizabethtown on a yellow, low-productive
soil. There is a tendency for the smaller applications to give the higher
ton-values. This is not always true, however, as may be seen from a
comparison of the results from the Elizabethtown and Sparta fields.
Somewhat similar amounts of manure were applied at both places, but
the ton-value at Elizabethtown was nearly three times as great as at
Sparta. In a similar manner 1.92 tons at Lebanon were worth $2.84
a ton, but 2.09 tons at Joliet were worth only $1.01 a ton.

These results indicate that some soils are more highly responsive
to manure than others, and that this difference in responsiveness exists
in both the more and the less productive soils.

Response to Crop Residues

Farms on which little or no livestock is fed usually produce more
or less crop-residue material that may be used for soil improvement
purposes. Cropping systems are easily devised in which the amount
of such material available for soil improvement can be greatly in-
creased. The value of such materials, as utilized on the soil experi-
ment fields, is shown by the data in Table 3. This material has con-
sisted chiefly of cornstalks, green-manure sweet clover, second-crop red
clover and soybean chaff grown upon the land and plowed down in the
absence of other soil treatments. In the early years the grain straws
were also returned.

This system of soil improvement may be rather effective on some
soils and less effective on others, judging from the data in Table 3.
The best results have been obtained on those fields where clover, espe-
cially sweet clover, will grow without the application of limestone,
such as those located on the dark soils with heavy noncalcareous sub-



46



BULLETIN No. 402



[May,



TABLE 3. CROP RESIDUES: CROP INCREASES AND VALUES OF INCREASES
RESULTING FROM PLOWING DOWN CROP RESIDUES IN ABSENCE OF

OTHER SOIL TREATMENT

(Figures represent average annual acre-increases and average annual acre-returns for
the four- year period ending in 1933)



Increases


Value of crop increases


Rank Field


Corn


Wheat


Graino-ops M cropg


1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25


Bloomington ,


bt,
10


[.

.0

.8
.0
.6

.8
.1
.7
9
.0
.7
.0
.1
,2
.2
.4
.0
.7
.5
.4
.6
.2
.8
.3
.9
,0


bu.
13.2
3.6
4.3
3.7
6.7
1.4
3.2
1.0
6.7
2.8
1.5
.8
.9
2.2
.3
.5
-1.0
.1

1.3

4

4.'l
1.7
.1
.1
- .8


$2
3
2
2
2
1
2
1,
1

2

1
1

-l'


.83
.19
.85
.17
62
70
06
93
92
.76
60
,57
16
.21
,22
,42
,55
,80
,51
,23
67
63
,35
07
.45


$4.82
3.19
2.94
2.17
1.67
1.44
.93
.78
.75
.61
.45
.43
.39
.37
.33
.31
.24
.24
.19
.17
.15
.09
.03
- .05
-2.79


Hartsburg ,


12


Minonk


, 8


Aledo ,


8


Kewanee ,


9


West Salem 1


6


Lebanon


8


Mt. Morris ,


11


Antioch 2


1


Oblong


2


Raleigh


2


Enfield


2


Newton




Carthage


13


Toledo


2


Unionville


3


Joliet


3


Oquawka


4


Ewing ,


, 1


Sparta


2


Clayton


, 5


Dixon ,


9


Carlinville


2


Elizabethtown


-1


McNabb


-7



Residues were used in addition to initial application of limestone,
were used in addition to limestone and rock phosphate.



2 Residues



soils. The poorest results, on the whole, were obtained on the less
productive soils, where legumes grow poorly, if at all, without the
application of limestone.

Some of the dark-colored soils that will not grow sweet clover with-
out limestone but which will grow good red clover (such as the Dixon
field) do not show high returns for the crop-residues system. This is
due, not to the fact that the system has no worth on such soils, but to
the fact that in making the comparisons only one crop of clover hay is
removed from the residues plot and two are removed from the check
plot. This makes it difficult to measure the effects of crop residues on
those fields where red clover is grown both as hay and as a residues
crop. If the system has worth on such soils, it should be reflected in
the grain yields. The fact that the Dixon field shows increased grain



1934] CROP YIELDS FROM ILLINOIS SOIL EXPERIMENT FIELDS IN 1933



47



yields in the residues system indicates that the system does have worth
on that field; this is not true, however, for the McNabb field. (Re-
sults from experiments dealing with various phases of crop-residues
management are listed on page 46).

Response to Limestone

On most experiment fields an application of 4 tons of limestone an
acre in addition to either manure or crop residues was made when the
field was established. Subsequent applications were made at the rate
of 2 tons an acre each four years thereafter until 1923, when all appli-
cations were discontinued. The total amount applied to date to the
respective fields ranges from 4 to 10 tons an acre depending upon the
age of the field. On most fields a total of about 8^i tons an^cre has
been applied, which is equivalent to about 700 to 800 pounds an acre
annually.

The influence of limestone on soil productivity is probably in large
part indirect. Many soils will not satisfactorily grow legume crops
such as red clover, sweet clover, and alfalfa until limestone has been



TABLE 4. LIMESTONE: VALUES OF CROP INCREASES RESULTING FROM

LIMESTONE USED IN ADDITION TO MANURE OR TO CROP RESIDUES
(Values represent average annual acre-returns for the four-year period ending in 1933)



Livestock systems


Grain systems


Rank


Field


Value


Rank


Field


Value


1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22


Oquawka


$7


00
67
57
76
92
80
77
55
48
46
46
15
92
54
74
.22
03
29
25
06
.13
.12


1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24


Oquawka


..$6


61

56
72
12
06
59
40
37
17
15
11
93
74
72
67
57
57
07
00
S3
47
01
34
15


Ewing


6


Aledo


... 6


Enfield


6


Lebanon


... 5


Oblong


s


Elizabethtown


... 5


Elizabethtown. . ....


4


Sparta


... 5


Toledo


4


West Salem


... 4


Raleigh x


4


Carlinville


... 4


West Salem


4


Enfield


... 4


Sparta


4


Carthage


... 4


Clayton


4


Toledo


... 4


Newton


4


Unionville


... 4


Unionville


4


Oblong


... 3


Lebanon


T>


Mt. Morris


... 3


Carlinville


T,


Clayton


... 3


Carthage


?


Raleigh


... 3


Aledo


?


Ewing


... 3


Joliet


?


Newton


... 3


Hartsburg


1


Bloomington


... 3


Mt. Morris


1


Dixon


... 2


Kewanee


1


Kewanee


... 1


Minonk




Joliet


... 1


Dixon




Hartsburg


... 1






Antioch




Minonk





48 BULLETIN No. 402

applied. With a satisfactory growth of these legumes, especially when
all or a part of the growth is plowed under, striking improvements in
soil productivity are usually observed. Altho this increased produc-
tivity may result directly from the residues of the legume crops grown,
limestone must be given the credit for making the increase possible.

Many of the fields which gave 'but little response to the crop-
residues system of soil management (Table 3) are very greatly im-
proved in productivity after the application of limestone (Table 4).
The degree of such improvement appears to be more or less directly


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Online LibraryF. C. (Frederick Charles) BauerCrop yields from Illinois soil experiment fields in 1933 together with a general summary for the four-year period ending in 1933 → online text (page 1 of 6)