Soil management effect on soil penetration resistance in the vineyard

  • Pietro Catania |
  • Mariangela Vallone
  • Felice Pipitone
  • Gioacchino Francesco Argento
  • Giuseppe Spartà
  • Vito Armando Laudicina


In environments characterized by steep slopes or arranged in terraces, among the shallow tillage systems, rototilling is extensively used. However, the effect of the repeated use of rototilling has a considerable influence on soil characteristics; it appears finely powdered, soft and without structure. In order to limit these inconveniences, an innovative self-propelled machine equipped with working tools as a spade, to be used in steep slopes or arranged in terraces areas, was designed by the Mechanics Section of the SAF (Scienze Agrarie e Forestali) Department of the University of Palermo in cooperation with Agrotec company, Padua, Italy. The aim of this study is to compare the effects of three machines for shallow tillage: a chisel plough (CP), a rototilling (RT) and a spading machine (SM) on penetration resistance in semi-arid environments of the Mediterranean basin. No tillage was also included. Penetration resistance (PR) was surveyed for all the treatments to a depth of 300 mm with an electronic dynamometer. The treatments consisted in the execution of a shallow tillage to a depth of 150 mm. SP treatment allowed us to obtain PR lower values throughout the tillage profile than RT, CP and NT. It follows that the type of machine used influences soil PR, and then the soil water storage capacity, key factor for the agricultural productions in semi-arid environments as in Sicily.


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penetration resistance, spading machine, tillage
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How to Cite
Catania, P., Vallone, M., Pipitone, F., Argento, G. F., Spartà, G., & Laudicina, V. A. (2013). Soil management effect on soil penetration resistance in the vineyard. Journal of Agricultural Engineering, 44(2s).

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