Given the extreme drought situation we are experiencing, at DFGRUPO we know that rain-fed arable crops, which depend exclusively on rain and water reserves in the soil, are particularly vulnerable.
To help these crops under these conditions, the following strategies can be implemented.
Adaptation of growing practices during drought:
- Selection of resistant varieties: Choose crop varieties that are drought tolerant and adapted to local soil and climate conditions.
These varieties often have deep root systems and other traits that allow them to better withstand water shortages.
- Soil management: Improve soil structure and water retention capacity by incorporating organic matter, such as compost or manure.
This can increase the ability of the soil to retain water during periods of drought.
- Minimal tillage: Practice conservation tillage or minimal tillage to reduce soil moisture loss.
Minimal tillage reduces evaporation and allows rainwater to penetrate the soil more easily.
- Vegetation cover: Use mulching to protect soil during drought, conserve moisture, and reduce evaporation.
Hedging crops, such as legumes, can also help fix nitrogen in the soil and improve its fertility.
- Crop rotation: Alternate crops with different water requirements and growing seasons to reduce pressure on water resources and the soil.
Crop rotation can also help prevent pests and diseases.
- Establish windbreaks: Plant trees or shrubs around fields to protect crops from wind during drought and reduce soil evaporation.
- Early warning systems: Use early warning systems and weather forecasts to anticipate drought situations and adapt cropping practices accordingly.
- Agricultural insurance: Consider taking out agricultural insurance to protect against economic losses caused by extreme droughts.
These practices can help rain-fed crops to better cope with extreme drought conditions and ensure food production and food security in the region.