Techniques of Soil And Water Conservation in Rainfed Agriculture

Techniques Of Soil And Water Conservation In Rainfed Agriculture

Soil and water are most essential for the growth and sustenance of plant life. Soil is important as it provides, foothold for plants and majority of nutrients needed by them. Water is essential as it forms larger part of the living matter and acts as a nutrient carrier.

Though, both soil and water a sources are available in plenty, they are not distributed equally in quality and quantity in every part of the world and are not inexhaustible. Their abuse would mean a great loss resulting in poverty. It takes centuries to form one inch layer of soil, but it does not take long to lose it by erosion. Research work carried out in Maharashtra State which has an undulating topography, has shown that loss of soil from unprotected land is as much as 125 tons per hectare every year and may be as high as 300 tons in a single year. The weight of one hectare of soil 2.5 cm. deep is about 325 tons.

Similarly, rain water which can sustain a good crop, if not conserved properly will not only cause scarcity and famine, but also wash way the soil which is a valuable national asset. There are many examples which show how once fertile plains and valleys have become deserts or barren lands due to neglect by mankind. It is, therefore, the prime responsibility of each generation to conserve soil which is the main capital of the farmer as well as the nation, at all costs and pass it on in good condition from one generation to another, so that the posterity will not blame them.

Soil and water conservation cannot be achieved only by individual efforts. The problem is too big, involving collective efforts on the part of farmers, technicians and Government. Recognizing the seriousness of erosion problem, the Central Government established the Central Board of Soil Conservation to assist the States and River valley Projects. It has established soil conservation research stations at Dehradun, Kotah, Ootacamand, Bellary, Vasad and Jodhpur, arranges for training of technical personnel and also served as clearing house for soil conservation information.

On account of chronic scarcity conditions prevailing over 3 major portions of the Deccan tract. Soil and water conservation research was started in 1924 and soil conservation work was taken up on a large scale in Maharashtra from 1943 – 44 onwards. At present Maharashtra contributes nearly 50 p.c., of the total progress in respect of soil conservation measures in the country.

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