Dryland farming in Africa
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CTA. 1993. Dryland farming in Africa . Spore 47. CTA, Wageningen, The Netherlands.
Permanent link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10568/49220
The agricultural development of dryland Africa presents formidable problems. It should not be supposed that drought is always the only, or even the major, constraint to crop production in dry regions. Social, economic, political and ecological...
The agricultural development of dryland Africa presents formidable problems. It should not be supposed that drought is always the only, or even the major, constraint to crop production in dry regions. Social, economic, political and ecological factors usually impose even greater limitations. These factors cannot be ignored when seeking solutions to agronomic problems. The poverty of farmers in much of Africa rules out the kinds of solutions favoured elsewhere in the world, including many classical dry-planting techniques. Terms such as 'dry', 'dryland' end 'drought' have very variable meanings. What is called dry in the humid regions may seem wet to farmers in semi-arid areas. In this book Dryland farming in Africa, which has been co-published by CTA, dryIand farming refers to adaptation of crop production to conditions of low or uncertain rainfall. The geographical area covered is almost entirely sub-Saharan, as far south as Botswana, and the book's main thrust is on crop production. The book deals with the dryIand farming environment and crop adaptation to drought with two important chapters following or dryland farming principles, traditional farming systems and the farming systems approach to research. There is a detailed chapter on crop production in the West African drylands, after which the key topics of soil and water conservation are covered Two chapters on the control of weeds and other pests and diseases provide useful guidance in these difficult areas. Four fine chapters deal systematically with the major groups of crops grown in the drylands cereal crops, oilseeds, grain legumes and root crops. Although livestock rearing also falls within the scope of dryland farming, it i such a large subject area in its own right thathat it is not covered in this particular boor However, because animals are frequent used for draught, a chapter of the book devoted to this aspect. Dryland farming in Africa edited by J R J Rowland 1993 336pp ISBN 0 333 47654 9 Pbk jointly published with Macmillan Press Ltd and available from CTA