West Visayas Farmers Train On Corn Production In Sloping Areas
To address top soil erosion among mountains planted of corn in Northern Iloilo and Central Capiz, the Department of Agriculture 6 together with the Bureau of Soils and Water Management (BSWM) conducted a briefing among 200 corn farmers on Sustainable Corn Production In Sloping Areas (SCoPSA).
The briefing was conducted at barangay Agdahon, Cuartero, Capiz and Batad, Iloilo where corn farmers usually use herbicide to control weeds before planting corn in the sloping mountains.
According to Sonia M. Salguero, BSWM Assistant Director, the proper way of establishing contour lines is across the slope, not along the slope, so that when the rains come, the waters won’t erode the topsoil and the nutrients it contains.
Dir. Salguero added that through SCoPSA, soil erosion in areas planted to corn will be lessened by 10 percent annually.
Meanwhile, Joseph B. Rojales, the Chief of Soil Erosion Assessment and Conservation Evaluation Section of BSWM said that SCoPSA targets to increase farmers’ income by at least 10 percent through the adoption of appropriate soil conservation measures in corn areas.
He stressed that SCoPSA as a system will teach farmers to plant alternative crops such as mungbean, peanut, kadios and soybean aside from corn in sloping areas in order to increase soil fertility.
“They can also plant kakawate, ipil-ipil and tricantera as barrier plants along the contour lines not only to prevent soil erosion but also to serve as added source of nitrogen for the soil, Rojales said.
Kelzie Rennieth Aquino, SCoPSA Focal Person of DA 6 said that techno-demo farms were already established in Cuartero, Capiz, and Batad, Iloilo.
“We have already given corn seeds, pineapple suckers and production inputs to our corn farmer cooperators in these farms. And we are closely monitoring the implementation of the project together with the local government units to ensure its success.” Aquino added. /MP