Scientific research

Sowing watermelons in rainfed land into deeply loosened strips

Author: Knowledge Management in CACILM Phase II, ICARDA.

Definition of technology:

Sowing melon crops is conducted in the middle of the soil strips of the required width, loosened to a certain depth for a better accumulation of precipitation and its use by the root system of plants.

Brief summary of technology:

In the spring, as the soil ripens, the field is harrowed, the soil is loosened along the strips to the desired depth and width in compliance with the established inter-rows. Together with soil loosening, the mineral fertilizers are applied along the strips.

Melon crops are sown in the center of the loosened strip. For efficient use of soil moisture, a narrow soil strip is loosened along the edges at a certain distance from the seed strip (see scheme).

This technology is used in the rainfed land to grow melon crops (Balkan province, Serdar district). This method of preparing the soil for planting provides multiple shoots, better conditions for the development and distribution of plant roots. The roots penetrating into the deeper moist soil layers use accumulated soil moisture and fertilizers more effectively. Scheme of growing melon crops in loosened soil strips.

Location: Ahal and Balkan provinces.

Area of technology application: 5-100 ha.

Stage of intervention: prevention / mitigation of land degradation.

Main land use issues and the main causes of land degradation:

The lack of measures to preserve moisture causes a lack of moisture in the root zone, exacerbated by arid climate, which leads to a strong desiccation of the topsoil, development of deflation – wind erosion.

Main technical features of technology:

Improving infiltration and accumulation of precipitation, preventing wind erosion, improving vegetation cover.

Type of land use Conservation measures

Rainfed arable land.

Production of annual crops - Во(Ca).

Agronomic measures:

A3: Processing of the soil surface;

A4: Processing of the subsurface soil layer.


Habitat Anthropogenic environment

Average annual rainfall: 210-370 mm.

Altitude (meter above sea level): 460-740 m.

Landscape: plains and mountains.

Slope (%): 2-9.5%.

Soil fertility: average.

Humus content in arable horizon: 0.5-1.9%.

Natural soil drainage/infiltration: average.

Size of land area (ha): 1-60 ha.

Landholder: farmer households

Land ownership: private use

Water use rights: private use

Market orientation: Market orientation


Impact of technology

Main advantages:

- the technology is easy to use;

- rainfed land becomes more productive without any additional investments;

- precipitation and fertilizer are used by plants more efficiently.

Main disadvantages:

- unprofitable in very drought years.

Acceptance/adoption of technology: Area of application of this technology for cultivation of melon crops on rainfed areas increases every year.

Reference(s): Reports and recommendations of the Turkmenistan Academy of Sciences.

Name of person(s) collected this description: A.S. Saparmyradov, Chief expert of the Department of Agriculture, the Academy of Sciences of Turkmenistan.

Address: 15, Bitarap avenue, Ashgabat744000, Turkmenistan.

Tel.: +993 12 94-30-60; Mob.: +993 65 63-71-15.





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