Agroforestry for soil and water conservation in the western Himalayan Valley Region of India 1. Runoff, soil and nutrient losses
Source: Agroforestry Systems, Volume 39, Number 2, February 1998 , pp. 175-189(15)
Abstract:Erosion losses were investigated in a field experiment, from 90 × 15 m erosion plots at 4% slope in the western Himalayan valley region of India. The plots were planted with Leucaena leucocephala and Eucalyptus hybrid, either as block plantation or in alley farming with maize (Zea mays), Chrysopogon fulvus grass or turmeric (Curcuma longa). The treatments also included contour planting of sole maize, sole Chrysopogon fulvus grass and a clean weeded cultivated fallow. During the nine year study period, the average annual monsoon rainfall was about 1000 mm and it caused 347 mm runoff and 39 Mg ha-1 soil loss per year from fallow plots. The runoff and soil loss were reduced by 27% and 45% by contour cultivation of maize. Contour tree-rows or leucaena hedges reduced the runoff and soil loss by 40% and 48%, respectively, over the maize plot, reducing soil loss to about 12.5 Mg ha-1. This reduction in erosion was primarily due to the barrier effect of tree or hedgerows and micro-terraces formed through sediment deposition along the contour barriers. Such vegetative measures, that are productive while being protective, offer viable alternative for erosion control in areas with gentile slopes of the valley region. High density block plantations of eucalyptus and leucaena almost completely controlled erosional losses and can be recommended for steeper slopes that are vulnerable to heavy erosion.
Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: 1: Central Soil and Water Conservation Research and Training Institute, 218, Kaulagarh Road, Dehradun, 248 195, India, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org 2: Central Soil and Water Conservation Research and Training Institute, 218, Kaulagarh Road, Dehradun, 248 195, India,
Publication date: February 1, 1998