Using Vetiver Technology to Control Erosion and Improve Productivity in Slope Farming

Oku Effiom, Aiyelari, Ambrose and Asubonteng, Kwabena O. (2015). Using Vetiver Technology to Control Erosion and Improve Productivity in Slope Farming. United Nations University Institute for Natural Resources in Africa.

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    Author Oku Effiom
    Aiyelari, Ambrose
    Asubonteng, Kwabena O.
    Editor Nutakor, Praise
    Saccoh, Karamzo
    Title Using Vetiver Technology to Control Erosion and Improve Productivity in Slope Farming
    Volume/Issue No. 10
    Publication Date 2015-07-04
    Place of Publication Accra
    Publisher United Nations University Institute for Natural Resources in Africa
    Pages vii,34
    Language eng
    Abstract Greater portion of land in southeastern Nigeria is on moderate to steep slope and this is usually cultivated without adhering to soil and water conservation measures. Such practice leaves disturbing on-site and off-site foot prints; as well as soil, water, carbon, and plant nutrient loss, with significant reduction in crop yields. This study assessed the effectiveness of vetiver buffer strips in mitigating degradation on a landscape of 45% slope. Vetiver Buffer Strip (VBS) planted at 5m, 15m and 25m interval surface spacing were compared to each other and also to usual farmers’ practice (FP) as the control. Twelve erosion plots, each measuring about 50m long and 3m wide were used. The plots were planted with traditional mixture of maize (10,000 plants ha-1) and cassava (30,000 plants ha-1). Pre and post-experiment soil properties including bulk density, organic carbon, nitrogen and phosphorous, exchangeable bases were determined in the laboratory. Runoff, soil loss, crop yields and rainfall were also measured. Rainfall lost as runoff were 29%, 7%, 12% and 13% under FP (using VBS at 5m, 15m and 25m) in 2010, and corresponding loss in 2011 were 21%, 8%, 10% and 11%. Crop yields were significantly higher under VBS plots. Yield declined in the second year under FP whereas it increased under VBS plots. When compared with FP plots, maize increased by 55%, 27% and 32% in 2010 under VBS with 5m, 15m and 25m spacing, and in 2011, it increased by 89%, 69% and 68%, with the same interval spacing respectively. Cassava yields increase under VBS at 5m, 15m and 25m by 76%, 47% and 41% respectively in 2010. The corresponding values for 2011 were 289%, 206% and 188%. Carbon loss in eroded sediment were 91%, 41% and 21% lower under VBS at 5m, 15m and 25m spacing respectively, than under FP in 2010 and in 2011, where it was 300%, 177% and 84%. Nitrogen loss was also lower under VBS at 5m, 15m and 25m by 80%, 28% and 29% in 2010 respectively, and in 2011, the values were 175%, 120% and 57%. Vetiver buffer at 5m interval significantly reduced runoff, soil losses and increased yields of the crops under study. In addition, vetiver showed dual potentials in climate change adaptation and GHGs emission mitigation, sequestering carbon and nitrogen and enhancing water use efficiency when compared with FP.
    UNBIS Thesaurus FOOD SECURITY
    Keyword Climate change adaptation
    Copyright Holder United Nations University Institute for Natural Resources in Africa
    Copyright Year 2015
    Copyright type Fair use permitted
    ISBN 9789988633059
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    Created: Fri, 28 Aug 2015, 23:35:54 JST by Praise Nutakor on behalf of UNU INRA