Practices for the improvement of the agricultural resilience of the forage production in semiarid environment: a review

Authors

Marcondes de Sá Souza, Thieres George Freire da Silva, Luciana Sandra Bastos de Souza, Alexandre Maniçoba da Rosa Ferraz Jardim, George do Nascimento Araújo Júnior and Hygor Kristoph Muniz Nunes Alves

Abstract

Water scarcity, climatic conditions and low availability of fodder produced in Caatinga are some of the main problems faced by farmers in the Brazilian semiarid region. Therefore, the objective of this paper is to review some agricultural resilience practices that aim to increase forage production in the Brazilian semiarid. Several studies have shown that the use of fodder plants tolerant to this type of environment is essential to improve the production of ruminant feed. Among these, we highlight the forage cactus, which is rich in water, energy and minerals and highly tolerant to water deficit. Millet, in turn, is another plant that adapts to this environment, presenting better nutritional characteristics, besides being a more fibrous vegetable, and can be associated with cactus in the diet of the herds. This association can be done through the intercropping, which allows the simultaneous cultivation of two or more species in the same area, aiming at the most efficient use of available natural resources. The use of irrigation events with minimal and regular water use in cactus crops has been shown to be a very promising practice. However, the scarcity of this resource in semiarid regions, adding to this increasing salt concentrations in the springs, requires proper management. Additionally, other agricultural resilience practices, such as mulching, can directly contribute to reducing the need for irrigation, conserving soil moisture, decreasing soil thermal amplitude, improving its chemical, physical and biological properties, contributing to improved agricultural yields.

Key-words

Forage Cactus, Millet, Intercropping, Mulching

Amaz. Jour. of Plant Resear. 3(4): 417-430. December 2019
https://doi.org/10.26545/ajpr.2019.b00051x
Full text PDF