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International Journal of Agricultural Research
  Year: 2013 | Volume: 8 | Issue: 1 | Page No.: 1-16
DOI: 10.3923/ijar.2013.1.16
Soil Quality Assessment of Cropping Systems in the Western Highlands of Cameroon
C.M. Tankou, G.R. de Snoo, H.H. de Iongh and G. Persoon

Abstract:
Soil nutrient depletion is a major constraint in agricultural development in sub-Saharan Africa. A study was conducted in the Western Highlands of Cameroon to assess soil nutrient balance and identify household and farm characteristics influencing soil nutrient balance using the procedures outlined in the NUTMON Tool-box. This is based on the assessment of the stocks and flows of nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) through the inputs (mineral fertilizers, organic inputs, atmospheric deposition and sedimentation) and outputs (harvested crop products, residues, leaching, denitrification and erosion). The gross margin was estimated as gross return minus variable costs while the net farm income was estimated as total gross margin minus fixed costs. The nutrient budgeting results revealed that nitrogen mining was very common at all levels with the greatest mining carried out by intercropping systems which generally received little or no off-farm inputs. High positive nutrient balances were found on market oriented crops. A general picture of the study site showed that only nitrogen was deficient while there were surplus amounts of potassium and phosphorus. The gross margins of green pepper, leeks and onions were negative while the others were positive. Legume intercrops could significantly modify the nutrient balance and sustainability in this region.
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How to cite this article:

C.M. Tankou, G.R. de Snoo, H.H. de Iongh and G. Persoon, 2013. Soil Quality Assessment of Cropping Systems in the Western Highlands of Cameroon. International Journal of Agricultural Research, 8: 1-16.

DOI: 10.3923/ijar.2013.1.16

URL: https://scialert.net/abstract/?doi=ijar.2013.1.16

 
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