Long-term Agroecosystem Research in the Northern Great Plains.

Friday, 18 December 2015
Poster Hall (Moscone South)
Marty Schmer1, Matt Sanderson2, Mark A Liebig3, Brian Wienhold1, Tala Awada4, Sharon Papiernik5, Shannon Osborne5, William Kemp6, Jane Asiyo Okalebo4 and Walter Riedall5, (1)USDA Agricultural Research Service, Lincoln, NE, United States, (2)USDA ARS, Northern Great Plains Research Lab, Mandan, ND, United States, (3)USDA-ARS/NGPRL, Mandan, ND, United States, (4)University of Nebraska Lincoln, Lincoln, NE, United States, (5)USDA-ARS, Brookings, SD, United States, (6)USDA-ARS, Fargo, United States
The Northern Great Plains is the bread basket of the United States, accounting for a substantial portion of U.S. agricultural production. This region faces critical challenges regarding balancing food needs, resource conservation (e.g Ogallala aquifer), environmental concerns, and rural economy development. Developing transformative, multifunctional systems will require equally imaginative and efficient tools to help farmers manage complex agroecosystems in a rapidly changing climate. The Northern Plains long-term agroecosystem research (LTAR) site at Mandan, ND and the Platte River High Plains LTAR (ARS/University of Nebraska-Lincoln) at Lincoln, NE in collaboration with USDA-ARS research units in Brookings, SD and Fargo, ND are collaborating to address the grand challenge of providing and sustaining multiple service provisions from Northern Great Plains agroecosystems. We propose to attain these goals through sustainable intensification based on the adoption of conservation agriculture principles including reduced soil disturbance, livestock integration, and greater complexity and diversity in the cropping system. Here, we summarize new concepts these locations have pioneered in dynamic cropping systems, resource use efficiency, and agricultural management technologies. As part of the LTAR network, we will conduct long-term cross-site research to design and assess new agricultural practices and systems aimed at improving our understanding of decision making processes and outcomes across an array of agricultural systems.