Scientific research

Cross-processing of sloping land

Author: Knowledge Management in CACILM Phase II, ICARDA.

Definition of technology:

The complex of agro-technical measures for soil processing on steep slopes promotes an increase of absorption and accumulation of moisture in soil, thereby reducing surface runoff and preventing erosion of sloping land.

Brief summary of technology:

Research showed that the maximum increase of volume of soil water capacity by increase in porosity and speed of infiltration is the basis of coping with water erosion.

To achieve it, autumn plowing across a slope and a soil chapping is recommended. These measures are carried out immediately after removing plant residues of the previous production to intercept abundant precipitation during winter and spring period.

Soil plowing and loosening is recommended only across a slope under soil moisture not less than 65% from the field capacity. Research showed that cross-sectional autumn plowing of the soil allows increasing the absorption speed of precipitation from 7.3 cm/hour in a control site to 18.2 cm/hour in an experimental site.

These measures promoted an increase of water holding capacity in the 80 cm soil layer by 725 m3/ha, and soil moisture at the level of the smallest field capacity was accumulated only by atmospheric precipitation. Moisture accumulation in the soil to the total optimal capacity allowed to postpone the start of the first irrigations by 20-26 days.

Location: “Zhantay-Tush“ WUA, Sokuluk district, Chuy province.

Area of technology application: ca. 10 ha.

Stage of intervention: reduction of land degradation, creation of optimum soil moisture.

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

Soils of a foothill zone of the Chuy valley differ from flat soils by a lack of water-stable agregates and when wet they are subject to surface erosion and landslides.

Main technical features of technology:

Increase of infiltration, soil water-holding capacity, decrease of surface runoff and accumulation of a winter and spring precipitation

Type of land use Conservation measures

Irrigated arable land.

Production of annual crops - Во(Ca).

Agronomic measures:

A3: processing of soil surface;

A4: processing of soil sub-surface.

Environment

Habitat Anthropogenic environment

Average annual rainfall: 422-616 mm.

Altitude (meter above sea level): 800-1200 m.

Landscape: foothill.

Slope (%): 7-15%.

Soil fertility: moderate.

Humus content in arable horizon: ca. 1.5%.

Natural soil drainage/infiltration: reduced.

Size of land area (ha): 2-5 ha.

Landholder: small/middle sized, mixed.

Land ownership: arable land - 75% individual and 25% state; state pastures.

Water use rights: through WUAs and organizations responsible for management of irrigation systems on relevant payment.

Market orientation: subsistence farming (self sufficiency), free market.

Assessment

Impact of technology

Main advantages:

- decrease of a surface runoff;

- soil moisture accumulation at the level of the smallest moisture holding capacity;

- saving of irrigating water because of the shift of the first irrigation by 20-26 days;

- increase of agricultural crop yields;

- increase of the income of farms.

Main disadvantages:

- capital leveling is required.

Acceptance/adoption of technology: a trend of increase of implementation of this technology is observed.

Reference(s): WOCAT Database and reports of the Kyrgyz Scientific Research Institute of Irrigation.

Name of person(s) collected this description: A. Naloychenko, leading research associate;

A. Atakanov, head of lab of irrigation and soil - erosive research. Kyrgyz Scientific Research Institute of Irrigation.

Address:4А, Toktonaliyev str., Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.

Tel.: +996 (312) 541 171.

E-mail: aatakanov@mail.ru 

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