Home | Seasons & Varieties | Tillage | Nutrient Mgmnt | Irrigation Mgmnt | Weed Mgmnt | Crop Protection | Cost of Cultivation | Photobank
Major Areas :: Dryland Agriculture :: Soil & Water Conservation Techniques
Agronomic Measures - Strip cropping

Strip cropping is a practice of growing field crops in narrow strips either at right angles to the direction of the prevailing wind, or following the natural contours of the terrain to prevent wind and water erosion of the soil. Strip cropping involves planting crops in strips across the slope, with alternate strips of grain and/or forage crops. Strip cropping combines the soil and moisture conserving properties of cross-slope farming with the soil building advantages of a crop rotation and is more effective in reducing soil losses.

Strip cropping is also a kind of agronomical practice in which ordinary crops are planted / grown in form of relatively narrow strips (6 to 10) across the land slope. These strips are so arranged that the strip crops should always be separated by strips of close growing and erosion resistance crops.

Strip cropping used as a technique for erosion control is a most effective method in certain soils and topography. This method becomes more effective for erosion control, which it is followed with crop rotations in the area where terraces are not practically feasible due to the fact that the length of slope is divided into different small segments. The strip crops check the surface runoff and force them to infiltrate into the soil, thereby facilitates to the conservation of rain water. Strip cropping is more intensive practice for conserving the rain water than contouring (i.e. about twice as effective as contouring) but it does not involve greater effect on soil erosion as terracing and bunding. Generally the use of strip cropping practice for soil conservation is decided in those areas where length of slope is not too longer.

Forms of strip cropping are :

  • Field strip cropping : A specialized strip cropping where crops are planted in parallel bands across a slope but do not follow contour lines; bands of grass or other close-growing species are alternated with the bands of cultivated crops.

  • Contour Strip Cropping : Contour strip cropping is the growing of a soil-exposing and erosionpermittingcrop in strips of suitable widths across the slopes on contour, alternating with strip of soilprotectingand erosion-resisting crop.

  • Wind Strip Cropping : It consists of planting tall-growing crops such as jowar, bajra or maize, and low-growing crop in alternately arranged straight and long, but relatively narrow, parallel strips laid out right across the direction of the prevailing wind regardless of the contour.

  • Permanent or Temporary Buffer Strip Cropping : In the case of permanent or temporary buffer strip cropping, the strips are established to take care of critical, i.e. steep or highly eroded, slopes in fields under contour strip cropping.

Purposes :

  • Reduce soil erosion from water and wind.
  • Strip Cropping reduces the rate of soil erosion and the runoff velocity.
  • Increasing the infiltration rate of the soil under cover condition.
  • Reduce the transport of sediment and other waterborne contaminants.
  • Protect growing crops from damage by windborne soil particles.
  • Improve water quality.

© All Rights Reserved. TNAU-2016.