Effect of long-term crop rotations on soil CO2 emission and earthworms

  • Lina Skinulienė
  • Vaclovas Bogužas
  • Vaida Steponavičienė
  • Aušra Sinkevičienė
  • Aušra Marcinkevičienė
  • Alfredas Sinkevičius
Keywords: CO2 emission, soil humidity, soil temperature, earthworms, crop rotations


Long-term field experiment was established in 1966 at the Experimental Station of Vytautas Magnus University, in the crop rotation collection of the Institute of Agroecosystems and Soil Science established in 1967. The soil is brown drained deeper carbonic shallow clayey (RDg8–k2) – Endocalcari-Epihypogleyic Cambisol (sicco) (CMg-p-w-can). The experiment was carried out in crops of winter wheat, rye and barley of different crop rotation in sequence of different preceding/catch crops. Crops of winter rye (Secale cereale L.) ‘Matador’, wheat ‘Skagen’ and spring barley ‘Orphelija’ were sown in 8 crop rotations in sequence of different preceding (catch) crop and rye monocrops. The research aim was to investigate the effect of long-term crop rotations on the soil CO2 emission, and on the number and mass of earthworms. After pre-crops, leaving a large amount of plant residues in the soil, the CO2 emission intensity was the highest. It was established that after harvesting of winter cereals and spring barely, the plant residue had the most significant influence on the amount of earthworms.