Special type tillage includes
(i) Subsoil tillage (sub soiling) is done to cut open/break the subsoil hard pan or plough pan using sub soil plough/chisel plough. Here the soil is not inverted. Sub soiling is done once in 4–5 years, where heavy machinery is used for field operations and where there is a colossal loss of topsoil due to carelessness. To avoid closing of sub soil furrow vertical mulching is adopted.
(ii) Levelling by tillage – Arable fields require a uniform distribution of water and plant nutrition for uniform crop growth. This is achieved when fields are kept fairly leveled. Levellers and scrapers are used for levelling operations. In leveled field soil erosion is restricted and other management practices become easy and uniform.
(iii) Wet tillage – This refers to tillage done when the soil is in a saturated (anaerobic) condition. For example puddling for rice cultivation.
(iv) Strip tillage – Ploughing is done as a narrow strip by mixing and tilling the soil leaving the remaining soil surface undisturbed.
(v) Clean tillage – Refers to the working of the soil of the entire field in such a way no living plant is left undisturbed. It is practiced to control weeds, soil borne pathogen and pests.
(vi) Ridge tillage – It refers to forming ridges by ridge former or ridge plough for the purpose of planting
(vii) Conservation tillage – It means any tillage system that reduces loss of soil or water relative to conventional tillage. It is often a form of non-inversion tillage that retains protective amounts of crop residue mulch on the surface. The important criteria of a conservation tillage system are:
(a) presence of crop residue mulch,
(b) effective conservation of soil and water,
(c) improvement of soil structure and organic matter content, and
(d) maintenance of high and economic level of production (refer section 7.10 of this chapter).
(viii) Contour tillage – It refers to tilling of the land along contours (contour means lines of uniform elevation) in order to reduce soil erosion and run off.
(ix) Blind tillage – It refers to tillage done after seeding or planting the crop (in a sterile soils) either at the pre-emergence stage of the crop plants or while they are in the early stages of growth so that crop plants (cereals, tuber crops etc.) do not get damaged, but extra plants and broad leaved weeds are uprooted.
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