By Bernard Vanlauwe
Soil degradation and nutrient depletion became severe threats to agricultural productiveness in Africa. Soils can't provide the amounts of meals required and yield degrees decline swiftly as soon as cropping commences. This booklet addresses those matters and comprises papers from a world symposium held at Cotonou, Benin, October 9-12, 2000, prepared by way of the foreign Institute of Tropical Agriculture, Ibadan, Nigeria and the dept of Land administration of the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium. In 5 major components it marks the top of a primary part of collaborative examine on 'Balanced Nutrient administration platforms for the wet Savanna and Humid wooded area Zones of Africa' and concludes with innovations, delivering crucial studying for crop and soil scientists.
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Additional info for Integrated plant nutrient management in sub-Saharan Africa: from concept to practice
Fallows increase the soil’s water infiltration capacity and are capable of deep root development of as much as 7 m (Torquebiau and Kwesiga, 1996). Fallows decrease soil erosion, by maintaining a leaf canopy during dry seasons and more vigorous crop growth during the rainy seasons. , 1999). SOIL AND WATER CONSERVATION. Fallows sequester carbon at a high rate (1–2 t C haϪ1 yearϪ1) in the soil. , 2000). , 1997a). CARBON SEQUESTRATION. , 1999; Franzel and Place, 2000). 1). The most profitable option, however, was the recommended rate of recurrent fertilizer nitrogen applications (112 kg N haϪ1 per crop) – an option most farmers are unable to consider.
A further step is the planting of trees that produce high-value products such as macadamia and coffee. Others like Markhamia lutea and Grevillea robusta provide poles and timber. In addition, research is ongoing to domesticate indigenous tree species that also produce highvalue products. , 1996). One example is Prunus africana, a timber tree indigenous to montane regions of tropical Africa. , 1998). Because trees are cut in indigenous forests, killed and the bark shipped to Europe to manufacture pills, prunus is now in the CITES Appendix II list of endangered species.
The question now is how to scale-up the delivery, from tens of thousands to tens of millions of farmers in Africa, to make a definitive end to food insecurity. This is the major challenge facing national governments, which ICRAF’s Development Division facilitates (ICRAF, 2000). In addition to village to village extension, knowledge is being shared by farmer visits to different areas in the country and across countries. Farmers in eastern Uganda have started adopting options for improving soil fertility developed in western Kenya.