Soil conservation is interesting as there are multifarious ways in which you can conserve it. All the methods are pretty simple and so, once you learn the techniques of soil conservation, you’ll never forget them.
Soil conservation is the process of preventing soil from erosion, acidification, contamination, loss of the top layer of the soil or the over-use of soil. The aim is to retain or conserve the fertility of the soil so that it remains conducive to plants. Saturation of acid content destroys the crucial soil nutrients for your plants. Overgrazing by cattle or the construction projects has also taken part in the erosion of soil. Since soil is a natural resource that is indispensable for the growth of plants, soil conservation should definitely be a way of life.
- The best and the simplest way to prevent the loss of the top layer of soil are to have bounty vegetation cover. It is a well-known fact that the roots of plants and trees bind the soil with their sheer strength. This explains the existence of mangrove trees near the coastal regions. Hence, if you have a garden, you are unconsciously doing philanthropy to the soil.
- Riparian zone is a frontier between the water body and the landmass. Growing vegetation in this area prevents soil erosion.
- Mulching helps to destroy weeds and at the same time allows the plants to ensconce firmly into the soil. It also sustains nutrients for the soil. At the time of drought and arid weather conditions, it provides support to the soil. Organic mulch helps to retain the fertility and health of the soil.
- Excessive salt content in the soil is detrimental to the health of the plants. Hence, salinity management should be followed or else the death of plants will lead to loss of soil.
- Watering the soil might appear alien to you, but it helps to conserve soil. However, overwatering the soil will wash away the soil layer. It is important to maintain a balance. Having small ponds is also a good practice. In addition to these, you may use a litmus paper to assess the acid content of the soil. It is an indicator of your soil’s health.
- Nitrogen-fixing organisms and denitrifying bacteria maintain the health of the soil. Earthworms bring about the aeration in the soil and decompose the soil. They also enhance the availability of the micronutrients. Excessive use of pesticides may lead to the destruction of certain essential soil organisms.
- Crop Rotation entails the growth of crops, especially a cereal and a leguminous crop, in an alternate template. Leguminous plants are known for promoting nitrogen-fixing bacteria which helps the soil to sustain its structure and fertility.
- No-tillage farming should be adopted as it will interfere with the natural state of the soil. Tilling often annihilates the essential microbes and soil organisms.
- Suitable water conservation techniques should be adopted in order to hinder the formation of gullies.
“Soil may not be beautiful, but it does beautiful things.”
- Terrace farming with its step-like formations prevents surface runoff water. It is prevalent in the hilly areas. It is better to avoid farming on steep slopes.
- Add humus to your soil and see how the fertility of your soil rises.
- Having wind barriers in the farming area will also prevent the soil from getting blown away.
Conscientious agricultural practices, along with good gardening habits, will be a bonus in lending your soil the good health it deserves.