Journal of
Soil Science and Environmental Management

  • Abbreviation: J. Soil Sci. Environ. Manage.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-2391
  • DOI: 10.5897/JSSEM
  • Start Year: 2010
  • Published Articles: 272

Full Length Research Paper

Soil degradation extent and dynamics of soil fertility improvement technologies In Majete Watershed, North Ethiopia

Kassaye Gurebiyaw Legese
  • Kassaye Gurebiyaw Legese
  • Department of Natural Resource Management, College of Agriculture and Rural Transformation, University of Gondar, Ethiopia.
  • Google Scholar
Abay Gelanew
  • Abay Gelanew
  • Department of Natural Resource Management, College of Agriculture and Environmental Science, University of Gondar, Ethiopia.
  • Google Scholar


  •  Received: 18 August 2018
  •  Accepted: 03 October 2018
  •  Published: 30 April 2019

Abstract

Soil degradation is among the serious environmental hazards of this generation. It is threatening agricultural production and leads to food insecurity. The objective of this study is to assess current soil degradation status and soil fertility enhancement technologies practiced by the land owners. Data were obtained through questionnaires administered to 156 respondents selected randomly from all watershed classification schemes (upstream, mid-land, and downstream). Field observations, interviews and discussions with village elders, farmers groups, and village scholars were conducted using a check list of topics focusing on soil degradation, and attempts were made to combat the problem. The result revealed that 70% of farmers experienced soil degradation on their farm land and also crop productivity decreased from time to time.  Productivity cannot be boosted without intensive fertilizer application. Most farmers (>64%) mentioned steep slope, high rainfall, deforestation and poor soil cover as the major causes to soil degradation. Soil fertility amelioration measures like application of compost, construction of terraces, farmyard manure, fallowing, the protection of regenerating natural vegetation, and tree planting were practiced but adoption level of technologies from farmer to farmer is entirely dependent on their awareness level. Simple soil conservation technologies which are easily adopted by farmers should be available. Above all, education infrastructure focusing on soil conservation should be available for land owners.

Key words: Soil degradation, soil fertility, soil fertility amelioration.