Stratification of soil aggregation and organic matter under conservation tillage systems in Africa

Mrabet, Rachid
Soil and Tillage Research
Publication Year: 
Soil degradation due to tillage has been reported Africa-wide. Other main causes of soil degradation are overgrazing, extensive cultivation of marginal lands, widespread clearing of vegetation for agriculture, deforestation, exploitation of unsuitable agricultural technologies, mis-management of arable lands, and frequent drought. Hence, declining soil fertility and increasing population pressure on lands are fragile bases on which to build expectations for improved crop production. This paper recognizes conservation tillage systems as one means for preventing food shortages and natural resources degradation throughout the continent. Conservation tillage has the potential for increasing soil organic matter content and enhancing soil aggregation. Conservation tillage systems can create an aggregated, fertile surface layer that is important from a soil erosion reduction perspective and thus for a sustainable agriculture in Africa. Some indigenous tillage systems in Africa can be adapted to meet objectives of conservation tillage systems. Further, recent technological developments in tillage and seeding machinery will certainly enhance the rate of farmer's acceptance and adoption of conservation tillage.
Name of Journal: 
Soil and Tillage Research
Resource Type: 
Document Type: 
Journal Issue/Article
Grassland Society of Southern Africa

The Grassland Society of Southern Africa (GSSA) is involved and concerned with the science and practice of range and pasture management. This broad field involves primarily the use and conservation of natural resources. It encompasses applied fields such as livestock production, wildlife management, nature conservation, water catchment management and range and mine-dump rehabilitation. The disciplines include, amongst others, ecology, botany zoology, range and pasture science, animal science, soil science and genetics. This collection includes journal articles from the African Journal of Range and Forage Science as well as related articles and reports from throughout the Southern African region.