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Sunday, 16 September 2018

Soil Erosion

Erosion is the wearing away and removal of fertile topsoil from an area by the wind and water (during a heavy rainfall). Plants cannot grow on eroded land. Erosion is, therefore, a serious problem as it affects the economy of a country that depends on agriculture for supplying its needs.

   Erosion is often due to bad farming practices such as overgrazing of pastures, continual cropping without fallowing or adding fertilizers, and exposing soil surfaces for long periods. Farmers  can prevent erosion by good farming practices. This includes the following:

1. Growing fast growing cover crops in between slow growing crop plants such as oil palms. Cut grass and crop residue can be spread over bare ground to protect it. This is known as mulching.

Ii. Contour ploughing or ploughing along the contour of the land to reduce water runoff.

iii. Building terraces on slopping land to slow the flow of water. Slow moving water  removes less soul than that fast moving water.

Preventing wind erosion by planting trees to break the wind. Such rows of trees  are known as wind breaks.