The Effects of Biochar and Farm Yard Manure on Soil Properties and Crop Growth in the Himalayan Agroforestry System

Although the population continues to increase and the demand for food grows, many parts of South Asia are experiencing agricultural land degradation and reduced productivity. This paper presents the findings of a study that looked at using biochar and Farm Yard Manure (FYM) at 5t/ha and 20t/ha, respectively, as soil amendments in a coffee agroforestry method in the Nepal Himalaya’s mid-hills. There were important (P0.05) positive effects on soil chemical properties, crop growth (height), and crop productivity, according to the report. The pH and SOM of the soil increased significantly, while other soil properties did not change significantly. Plant growth increased significantly after biochar was applied, but crop yields only increased slightly. Biochar applied at low rates in conjunction with FYM appears to have immediate positive effects on plant vegetative growth; however, soil properties and overall crop yields can take longer to improve. The biophysical and chemical quality of the soil is vital for crop production and environmental protection.

Author (s) Details

Deepak K. Gautam
Nepal Agroforestry Foundation (NAF), P.O.Box 9594, Amarawatimarg 35, Koteshwor, Kathmandu, Nepal and Department of Environmental Science and Engineering, Kathmandu University, P.O.Box 6250, Dhulikhel, Nepal.

Roshan M. Bajracharya
Department of Environmental Science and Engineering, Kathmandu University, P.O.Box 6250, Dhulikhel, Nepal.

Bishal K. Sitaula
Department of International Environment and Development Studies (Noragric), Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU), P.O.Box 5001, N-1432 As, Norway.

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