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  • The significance of biological bases in maize production

    The comparative trial has been set up in the Demonstration Garden of the Institute of Crop Sciences of the University of Debrecen, Centre for Agricultural and Applied Economic Studies, Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences and Environmental Management in 2012, with 24 hybrids with different genetic characteristics and growing periods. The soil of the trial is lime-coated chernozem, with a humus layer of 50–70 cm.

    The weather of the trial year was quite droughty; the monthly average temperature was 3–4 oC higher than the average of 30 years. High temperature, together with lack of precipitation occurred during the most sensitive phenophases of maize (flowering; fecundation, grain saturation).

    The following characteristics have been observed: starting vigour, date of male and female flowering, plant and cob height, dry-down dynamics during maturation and the change of yield composing elements has also been quantified. The yield was recalculated to 14% moisture content grain yield after harvesting.

    The beginning of the growing period was advantageous, therefore the analysed hybrids could grow a high (above 300 cm) and strong stem. The yield of the hybrids changed between 10.33 and 11.87 t ha-1, but as a result of the unfavourable climatic extremes, their genetic yield potential prevailed only at a rate of 30–40%. However, moisture content by the time of harvesting was good despite its early date (12th September); it remained under below 14% in most cases. Dry-down was measured on a weekly basis between 14th August and 5th September.

    The analysis of the qualitative parameters of the maize hybrids (protein %, oil % and starch %) resulted in significant differences. The most significant difference has been observed in the case of protein content (LSD5%=2.01). Oil content was the most advantageous in the case of hybrids belonging to the mid-late growing group (FAO 400). The X9N655 and 36V74 hybrids had the highest oil content (around 4%), while hybrids P9915 and 37F73 had significantly lower oil content. Starch content was above 70% in the case of every hybrid.

    Hybrid selection is highly important in terms of yield and yield security of maize, as well as the application of modern biological fundamentals and hybrid specific technology for the improvement of the level of cultivation technology.

  • Interaction of yield stability and year in major agricultural crops

    The effect of hydro-meteorological extremities on plant cultivation is the result of the correlation of many factors. These may increase or decrease the effects of hydro-meteorological extremes. The degree of this variance depends on the professionality of treatments, on the quality of the applied technique and technology and also on the soil’s water management characteristics.
    The water management characteristics of Hungary’s arable land are mainly unfavorable or medium. In the past two decades the conditions of originally good soils, from a water management aspect, have significantly deteriorated in the critical 0-60 cm soil layer. This is mainly due to unprofessional land use, a lack of deepening cultivation and neglected organic cultivation. At the same time, hydro-meteorological extremities occur more frequently and the sensibility of plant cultivation has increased.
    The sensibility of plant cultivation is type and location specific, yet, it also effects both the quality and quantity of the result.
    The stability analysis, which covered the period of four decades and incorporated 6-7 agro-ecological areas proves and highlights the following:
    • Winter wheat only reacted to extensive cultivation and unfavorable environmental conditions to a small degree. On the other hand, the effect of hydro-meteorological extremities increases.
    • The stability analysis of maize, which is sensitive to cultivation technology and the location of cultivation, proved just the opposite. Good soil and adequate technology significantly reduces the effect of any particular year.
    • From the years examined, the most favorable proved to be the one with average precipitation. Maize reacted to both extremities in a similar way. Winter wheat reacted to more precipitation with less yield.
    • The yield quality of winter wheat was negatively effected by drought. The negative effect of precipitation is limited to the period of ripening and harvest, so the likelihood of such an effect is not significant.
    • The yield of sunflower – due to pests – significantly reduces in years with high precipitation, while a difference between dry and average years cannot be pinpointed out. The oil content in both dry years and in years with high precipitation is evident, compared to years with average precipitation.
    • The root yield of sugar beet is reduced by drought while the sugar content depends on soil characteristics and climatic extremities. A difference could also be noted by location, whether in Western Hungary and on the Great Plain. Great sugar content can be achieved in years with high precipitation in Western Hungary, while the same result occurred with average precipitation on the Great Plain. Drought did not have a positive effect on sugar content in either location.

  • Effect of sowing time and planting space on change of yield and protein content of white lupine (Lupinus albus L.)

    The hinge of the lupine crop cultivation technology is the sowing time and the determination of the breeding area. According to the literature the early sowing (as soon as possible to go to the soil) and larger growing area is recommended for seed production. Based on the results of our 2 years experiment, the effect of sowing time and different spacing is important on yield of white lupine, and the effect of the sowing time is more significant. A decrease in the yield was observed after later sowings. The yield and the rate of its decreasing was varied in one year and among different years depending on wheather condition and sowing time.

    The role of sowing time is significant for protein content of seeds. The average protein content decreased due to the later sowings in 2014, while 2015 the protein content of seeds in early sowing time and of plants sowed 4 weeks later was similar. We measured less protein content in the 2. sowing time sowed 2 weeks later than the first one. In the studied years the average protein content of seeds from different row spaces were not different.

  • Effects of Tillage Systems on Physical Status and Organic Matter Turnover of the Soil

    The cultivation technology for those plant, that play a key role in arable land production need to be renewed in order to reduce production costs and to protect arable land. The modernisation of technologies can only be achieved by applying appropriate tillage systems. Our measurements were carried out on chernozem soil with lime deposits at the Látókép Experimental Station of the Center for Agricultural Sciences, Debrecen University, in long term tillage experiments set up in 1989. We examined the typical physical parameters, the albedo, field capacity, the bulk density of the soil, organic carbon content (humus %) and the measured pH-values in the water solution within the two tillage variations. We have also modelled nitrogen cycle formation in different treatments.
    A significant difference occured between the albedos of the two soils, which may be the result of significant amounts of stem remaining on the surface in the case of the reduced tillage method. The yellow, waxy stem of maize reflects 21% of the sun’s rays, especially at the beginning of the vegetation period, when its decomposition has only just started. This delys the warming up in early spring, which delays the sowing time of maize and reduces evaporation. In the two tillage variations, the water management characteristics do not differ practically, the wilting point field capacity are in accordance. In reduced tillage methods, the so-called „plough-pan” can be well measured at 15-20 cm, while in winter ploughing it is at 30 cm. The humus % of the soil does not differ in the two tillage variations, but due to the difference in bulk density this means a different humus and organic nitrogen content. The organic nitrogen content is greater in the reduced tillage method. On the basis of pH value evaluations, we could not detect significant differences in the two tillage variations. The organic nitrogen content of areas where reduced tillage method was applied is higher than in areas where conventional winter ploughing was applied.

  • Sunflower in Romanian agriculture

    Romania is one of the largest producers of sunflower closely followed by Bulgaria, Hungary, France and Spain. The total sunflower production increased after 1990, due the increase of cultivated surface during the moderate yield average increasing rate. Last year, Romania was ranked first in the European Union (EU) for the area cultivated with sunflower and the total production of sunflower seeds, according to the National Statistics Institute (INS). Romania's position on the map of sunflower producers area is supported by about 1 million hectares sown. In the segment of sunflower productivity, Romania has an unfavourable position, situated in the last places in the classification of the EU's most productive agricultures. In order to increase production per hectare, it is required to perform measures aimed at the elements of sustainable cultivation technology, including the stability of the production level by ensuring phytosanitary protection.

  • Anti-Oxidants in Agriculture

    Today’s programmes aiming at enhancement of fruit and vegetable consumption have been intensified. In the unanimous view of experts, different health problems, such as those of the immune system, inflammations, and even certain cancerous diseases can be prevented and/or cured with regular consumption of fresh (raw) fruit and vegetables. It is well-known fact that among the biologically valuable components, antioxidant compounds – C- and E vitamins, as well as carotinoides – play an important role. In this field, Hungary can expect success in the future since it has excellent plant genetic stock. Regretfully, national data banks regarding cultivation technology, cultivation areas or varieties for fruits and vegetables and their antioxidant contents do not exist in Hungary. Nevertheless, in connection with the so-called “Hungaricums” its existence would be of urgent necessity. Such excellent Hungarian products are – among others – a lot of sour cherry varietiles, the Szeged green pepper and the Makó onion. They enjoy high priority as “Hungaricums” even in the European Union and such activities that support these kinds of products should be enhanced by intense and consequent research work, which may prove their role as functional foods. Presently’ the USA leads in the research of antioxidant compounds of sour cherry, and so far 17 of these compounds have been found partly in Hungarian varieties. Similar research on green, and ‘pritamin’ peppers have not gone so far since they were limited only for seasoning paprika. In Hungary, studies on onion and garlic have not been performed. It should be mentioned that due to the continental climate, these products may be cultivated, consumed or processed only in a limited period. Taking this into consideration, processing and conserving methods are needed which make the consumption of these fruit and vegetables as functional food possible year-round. Scientific establishment of this set of questions is of current concern, because consumption of these products could have an important role in improving the health status of the Hungarian population in the future.

  • Effects of Site on Winter Wheat Quality 2002/2003

    The demand of modern societies for high food quality is evident. Thus, it is important for agriculture to produce row materials that are valuable for nutrition and have favourable characteristics for food processing. For this we need a knowledge about the factors which determine the quality of products. One of the main features of plant production is the “immobility”. This way the characteristics of the field influence the quality of the product, like example winter wheat, which is the main cereal in Hungary and Europe.
    The Concordia Co. has charged the Central Laboratory of Debrecen University, Agricultural Centre with laboratory testing of the 2002/2003 winter wheat crop. The samples consist of thirteen winter wheat varieties from six different sites under the same cultivating conditions. Therefore, the important wheat quality factors were analysed solely against site conditions with the use of Győri’s “Z” index, which contains these parameters.
    Soils were tested first. In this experiment excepting the negligible differences between the sites, there were no linear relations found between quality factors, productivity and soil features. The case is the same with the relation between precipitation, temperature and quality parameters. However, it must be noted that additional soil analyses are required to interpret the extreme results obtained from Karcag.
    The calculated Győri’s Z-index shows relative stability concerning certain varieties, although considerable deviation can be found in varieties related to the sites. According to these results, it can bestated that winter wheat quality was not linearly influenced by soil and weather in the 2002/2003 vegetation period. As the same cultivation technology was used in the experiment, the index was determined by genetic features. It must be noted that these findings are relevant only to this experiment.

  • Economic questions of precision maize production on chernozem soil

    It is one of the main topical objective to establish the conditions of sustainable farming. The sustainable development in crop production also calls for the harmony of satisfying human needs and providing the protection of environmental and natural resources; therefore, the maximum consideratio of production site endowments, the common implementation of production needs and environmental protection aims, the minimum load on the environment and economicalness. Precision farmin encompasses the farming method which is adjusted to the given production site, the changing  technology in a given plot, the integrated crop protection, cutting edge technologies, remote sensing, GIS, geostatistics, the change
    of the mechanisation of crop production, and the application of information technology novelties in crop production. Modern technology increases efficiency and reduces costs. The efficiency of crop production increases by reducing losses and the farmer has access to a better decision support information technology system. In addition, we consider it necessary to examine the two currently most important economic issues: “is it worth it?” and “how much does it cost?”. During the analysis of agricultural technologies, we used the precision crop production experiment database of KITE Zrt. and the Institute for Land Utilisation, Regional Development and Technology of the Centre for Agricultural and Applied Economic Sciences of the University of Debrecen.
    During our analytical work, we examined three technological alternatives on two soil types (chernozem and meadow). The first technology is the currently used autumn ploughing cultivation. We extended our analyses to the economic evaluation of satellite navigationassisted ploughing and strip till systems which prefer moisture saving. On chernozem soil, of the satellite-based technological alternatives, the autumn ploughing cultivation provided higher income than strip till. In years with average precipitation supply, we recommend the precision autumn ploughing technological alternative on chernozem soils in the future. On meadow soil, the strip till cultivation technology has more favourable economical results than the autumn ploughing. On soils with high plasticity – considering the high time and energy demand of cultivation and the short amoung of time available for cultivation – we recommend to use strip till technologies. 

  • Volume of Paulownia Shan Tong (Paulownia fortunei × Paulownia tomentosa) plantation in Eastern Hungary: a case study

    Volume tables for tree plantations are not unknown in international practice. In many places, this is due to the uniqueness of the species or variety composition of the plantations and the cultivation technology used. In most cases, this is also justified by specific soil (ecological) conditions. In Hungary, publications on Paulownia have not yet included a volume table. This is the first one we are publishing, thus it can be considered as a gap-filler. The research was conducted in Monostorpályi, a 1.8 hectare, 8-year-old municipal plantation. 8 trees were selected randomly and their parameters were studied.

  • Comparative study of different soybean genotypes in irrigation technology

    In many places in Hungary, early maturity soybean can be successfully grown. The earlier maturity group of soy which ripened in 110–125 days in most crop areas in Hungary. However, to achieve excellent results, the selection of proper varieties is important too. Successful cultivation is largely dependent on the macro and microclimate of the production area, the nutrient supply of the soil and the cultivation technology. Soybean can be produced in places where the amount of precipitation is right, as the lack of water results in lower yields and deteriorated oil and protein concentrations. In the following study, 2 years (2016 and 2017) are compared to the yield, protein and oil content of the soybeans of the early maturation group in irrigated and non-irrigated treatments. Based on our experiment, it can be stated that, during the irrigation of soybean, oil and protein content and yields did not always change.

  • Application of GIS, precision agriculture and unplugging cultivation in plant breeding of Karcag

    In the last two decades, the prevailing ecological conditions and climate change have caused negative effects. Therefore, a paradigm shift is needed in the field growing of plants. The latest inventions, digital technologies, precision cultivation are not enough, the mentality of the farmers is more important. For this reason, not only big financial sacrifices, but adequate receptivity are needed on behalf of farmers. Adequate skills and continuous self-education are necessary. The yield of plant growing farms is determined by ecological conditions to a 40% extent, genetic background of the seed has a 30% share and the applied agricultural technology has a proportion of 30%. In different agroecological conditions, bred varieties of plants have bigger tolerance to unfavorable factors of the regions and significant yield stability. Farmers, who buy and sow seeds, can only contribute to the genetic potential of the seeds with cultivation technology. Plant breeding provides stable genetic background and good quality seeds. Breeding activity – choosing variety proposants, breeding them, selection work, classical breeding process for 8-10 years – must create new landraces, which can produce balance, high yield and have good quality parameters in extreme ecological conditions, yearly excursion and have higher tolerance to unfavorable factors of the region giving significant production stability for farmers. In Karcag GIS technology, precision cultivation elements and soil-friendly agrotechnical methods have been introduced which largely support the aims of breeding and can also provide optimal cultivation conditions in extreme years. Because of the specificity of breeding the main aim is not only to increase yield but to provide harmonic growing for bred materials, to decrease the number and the cost of cultivation and to be punctual. In this study, applied new methods and technologies are introduced.