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Assessment of Soil Chemical Properties and Fertility in Some Traditional Irrigation Schemes of the Babati District, Manyara Region, Tanzania
Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries
Volume 5, Issue 6, December 2016, Pages: 249-260
Received: Oct. 18, 2016; Accepted: Nov. 3, 2016; Published: Dec. 21, 2016
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Joachim HJR Makoi, National Irrigation Commission (NIRC), Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
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Aim: To assess the soil chemical properties and fertility status in selected traditional irrigation schemes in Babati District Council in Manyara Region, Tanzania. Place and Duration of Study: The survey was conducted in Mkombozi, Muungano and Endamajek proposed irrigation schemes, Babati District, in Tanzania during the dry season of 2002. Methodology: Soil sampling was done after the soils were grouped into similar soil types following pedogeomorphic approach whereby eleven (11) mapping units were delineated but only ten (10) mapping units were sampled. Using zigzag sampling techniques, thirty (30) disturbed soil samples were collected at depth 0 – 30 cm from the delineated pedogeomorphic units. The soil samples were bulked thoroughly mixed and sub sampled to obtain a representative composite sample and sent for laboratory analysis at the Selian Agricultural Research Institute (SARI), Arusha, Tanzania. Results: The results showed significant difference in the fertility status in the selected sites of each scheme. Based on guidelines of soil nutrient contents established elsewhere, pH of the soils in the study areas were rated as mildly alkaline in 2% in Endamajek and moderately alkaline in 80% in Muungano, 29% in Mkombozi and 73% in Endamajek. The soils were also rated as strongly alkaline in 66% of the area in Mkombozi. Crop production was moderately constrained by sodicity and strongly sodic in 26.6% of the total surveyed area in Endamajek. TN and OM were low, in Muungano; very low or low to medium,; in Mkombozi and low to medium, in Endamajek respectively. Available P was rated as low in 74% and high in 26% of the area in Muungano; high in Mkombozi as well as medium in Endamajek. Of the total surveyed area, 66% in Mkombozi and 26.6% in Endamajek have low CEC. C/N ratio in 46% of the total area surveyed in Muungano was of good quality suggesting ideal conditions for plant growth as compared with Mkombozi and Endamajek. Results also indicated that Ca: Mg ratios to be less than suggested guidelines in 35% of the surveyed areas in Muungano and all the surveyed areas in Endamajek suggesting that plants would probably respond to the addition of Ca or Mg in such areas. Conclusion: The soil fertility status and overall information from this study could be used in fertilizer and sodicity and/or salinity management studies to establish nutrient and drainage requirements for different crops which are grown in these areas.
Calcium, Cation Exchange Capacity, Crop Production, Sodicity, Fertility Constraints, Management Practices, Soil Organic Matter, Survey
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Joachim HJR Makoi, Assessment of Soil Chemical Properties and Fertility in Some Traditional Irrigation Schemes of the Babati District, Manyara Region, Tanzania, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries. Vol. 5, No. 6, 2016, pp. 249-260. doi: 10.11648/j.aff.20160506.16
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