Long-term and short-term strategies for for soil quality - Langgewens

This experiment has been added by the GLTEN Curators using existing published sources.
Local identifier
Years operational
To explore long-term yield trends in different cropping systems under management practices representative of common practices among local farmers, two sites compared.
Long-term soil tillage and crop rotation trials initiated in 2007 in the Mediterranean climate region of South Africa. These trials are ongoing and will continue until at least 2023. The experiment is duplicated at Tygerhoek research farm. Both regions are important grain-producing regions, but differ in terms of rainfall amount and distribution.
Data Access Statement
Available to any researcher on request
Data Access Notes
Research Data Agreement Form T&C to be completed: All data are supplied with limited distribution rights. Data supplied by the Department may not be copied, displayed, redistributed or sold in any form to any other bodies/parties outside our organisation / department, without prior Departmental approval. Data sets supplied, including those of which the Department is not the custodian, may only be used for projects assigned/approved by the Western Cape Government. The Department cannot be held responsible for any errors, which may occur in provided data sets.
Data license
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Data policy
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The Winter Cereal Trust of South Africa
funding agency
Western Cape Department of Agriculture Langgewens Research Farm
research organisation

Site: Long-term and short-term strategies for for soil quality - Langgewens

research farm
Local code
Langgewens Research Farm
South Africa
Geographic location
-33.170078, 18.422809
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Visits permitted?
Fertiliser and pesticide applications followed local agronomist recommendations for each crop type, but were the same between tillage treatments. This approach was also applied to herbicides, and all crops in all treatments received a robust herbicide regime. Herbicide applications were the same for all plots of each crop at each farm in each year, but differed between crops according to crop susceptibility, between farms according to locally dominant weeds, and between years according to product availability and agronomist recommendations. Thus the herbicide regime differed between rotation treatments at each farm. Herbicide use was however consistent among tillage treatments, except that the pre-emergence herbicide trifluralin was not used in ZT.
Soil type
Soil description
Stagnic Lixisols and Leptic Lixisols. The soil is a sandy-loam and soil has a high stone content. The soil is shale-derived and shallow (approximately 400 mm deep).
Soil properties
VariableDepthValue (range)UnitsRef yearEstimated?Baseline?
clay content0 – 15 Centimetres (10 – 15) Percent
soil organic carbon0 – 15 Centimetres (1.1 – 1.3) Percent
Climatic type
warm temperate climate
Climate description
warm temperate region of South Africa, with hot dry summer. The Swartland receives approximately 80% of its rainfall in winter between April and September.
Climate properties
VariableTime periodValue (range)Units
mean annual rainfall395 millimeter

Design period: Current design period (2007—)

Design Type
Sub-plot dimensions are 25 x 10 m. There are four-year crop rotation systems, namely continuous spring wheat (WWWW), wheat-medic-wheat-medic (WMWM) and wheat-canola-wheat-lupin (WCWL) rotations. The rotations are selected to be representative of current common crops and practices in the Western Cape, either a fully arable rotation (WCWL) or an arable-hay rotation (WMWM). Wheat monocultures (WWWW) are currently less common in the Western Cape, but are still present, and this treatment serves as a control for the effect of diversification. The tillage treatments were arranged along a gradient of soil disturbance.
Design description
The trials were laid out in a split-plot design with four crop rotation systems as the whole-plot factor and four tillage systems as the sub-plot factor, replicated in four blocks. All permutations of the crop rotation systems were present each year.
CropYears grown
spring wheat
Medicago sp
Crop Rotations
continuous wheat
  • 1
    spring wheat
  • 2
    spring wheat
  • 3
    spring wheat
  • 4
  • 1
    spring wheat
  • 2
    Medicago sp
  • 3
    spring wheat
  • 4
    Medicago sp
  • 1
    spring wheat
  • 2
  • 3
    spring wheat
  • 4
Factor name
Factor levels
tillage process
conventional tillage
Tine harrow, offset disc plough or mold-board plough, and seed-drill with tine openers
minimum tillage
Tine harrow and seed-drill with tine openers
no tillage
Seed-drill with tine openers
zero tillage
Seed-drill with disc openers
weed abundanceNot specified
weeds dataNot specified

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