Assessment of soil and landform characteristics for implementation of conservation agriculture in West Usambara Mountains, Lushoto District, Tanzania

Abstract: 
Developing strategies that promote conservation agriculture in the West Usambara Mountains in Tanzania poses a particular challenge. This research used empirical and qualitative method to assess soil and landform characteristics in relation to predominant five conservation agriculture practices on the landscape. Chemical and physical properties of composite samples (0-25cm) from terraces, miraba (a local technique), raised beds, fallow and fields with no conservation were determined. Results indicated that the differences in total nitrogen, organic carbon, base saturation, available phosphorus, CEC, and pH were statistically significant (p=0.05). In most cases ‘miraba’ had better values of CEC, P (Bry) and total nitrogen. Since construction of ‘miraba’ is far cheaper than terraces, efforts should be put towards improving this technique.
Développer les stratégies qui favorisent l’agriculture de conservation dans les montagnes occidentales d’Usambara en Tanzanie pose un défi particulier. Cette recherche a employé la méthode empirique et qualitative pour évaluer des caractéristiques du sol et de la forme du relief par rapport aux cinq prédominantes pratiques en matière d’agriculture de conservation sur le paysage. Les propriétés chimiques et physiques des échantillons composés (0-25cm) provenant des terrasses, de miraba (une technique locale), des lits surélevés, de jachère et des champs sans conservation ont été déterminées. Les résultats ont indiqué que les différences en azote total, carbone organique, saturation de base, phosphore disponible, CCE et pH étaient statistiquement significatives (p=0.05). Dans la plupart des cas, ‘’miraba ‘’ avait de meilleures valeurs de CCE, du P (Bry) et de l’azote total. Puisque la construction du ‘’miraba `’ est de loin moins cher que les terrasses, des efforts devraient être fournis pour améliorer cette technique.
Language: 
Date of publication: 
2010
Country: 
Region Focus: 
East Africa
University/affiliation: 
Collection: 
RUFORUM Conferences and Workshops
Licence conditions: 
Open Access
Access restriction: 
Form: 
Printed resource
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ISSN: 
E_ISSN: 
Edition: 
Extent: 
559-561
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About the RUFORUM 2010 Biennal Conference
"The 2010 RUFORUM Biennial Conference was the second in the series. The main objective of the Biennial conferences is to provide a platform for agricultural research for development stakeholders in Africa and beyond to actively exchange findings and experiences, while at the same time learning lessons towards improving performance of the agricultural sector and ultimately people’s livelihoods. The biennial conference is RUFORUM’s most comprehensive meeting for the diversity of stakeholders in agriculture. It is especially dedicated to graduate students and their supervisors, grantees in RUFORUM member universities and alumni. It is a platform for peer review, quality control, mentorship, networking and shared learning. This record contains an extended abstract accepted under the theme of Natural Resource Management"