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To fallow or not to fallow

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When the timeliness of operation is considered, the reduced compaction of the soil, the increased groundcover that is maintained, the reduction in erosion, the increased biological activity and the associated increased soil structure, then minimum tillage fallows are a good option... It is also starting to show that the higher costs associated with no-till systems is more than offset by improved yields and that the sandy soils should be treated differently to the loamy soils, that is, those soils with more than 10 percent clay content... "Ploughing-in the stubble creates nitrogen early in the fallow in sandy soils, but most of it is leached below the root zone by the time you sow the crop in average to above average rainfall years," says Dr John Leys, a senior soil research scientist with the Department of Infrastructure, Planning and Natural Resources in NSW, and who is working with the MSFP...