Soil and Plant Nutrition - Essay Example in Agriculture

Published: 2022-02-22
Soil and Plant Nutrition - Essay Example in Agriculture
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Agriculture
Pages: 4
Wordcount: 999 words
9 min read

Agriculture is one practice that has posed a considerable contribution to economic, political, and social development. Soil conservation is the practice of maintaining and preserving the soil's original structure and composition. For the purpose of achieving soil conservation, beneficial farming practices become the point of focus. There are social practices (Stalinization, burning, acidification, and over-use) that must be controlled and prevented. Erosion is the primary buffer of soil loss. All these practices involve science; intensive research is necessary to achieve soil conservation. Agriculture is an art and science that has always sustained the growth of humankind since creation. Revolutions in agriculture have brought mechanization, which puts into using the available technology. Making work easier, by the use of technology, needs in-depth scientific research to keep systems running. Other thank the use of technology, some methodologies use craft to conserve the soil. Such workmanship has a scientific background.

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Soil is a significant contributor to the growth of agriculture. On the other hand, man has designed various forms of technologies that destroy the nature of the ground (Schjoerring, Cakmak, & White, 2019). The existence of soil traces back to the origins of the earth. Over time, the commodity, land, has been used inexhaustibly. The effects of the deviation of the natural and original composition of soil have led to the need for soil conservations. In this essay, a discussion on the various ways science has contributed to soil conservation, and an evaluation of the pros and cons of these methods follows.

Science has tried to address these problems associated with soil conservation. There are methods proven to be beneficial to the soil. These practices include contour plowing, terrace farming, crop rotation, planting cover crops, the building of gabions, and check dams and salinity management. These ideas are put in place to solve both soil erosion and nutrient management (Schjoerring, Cakmak, & White, 2019). Cover crops protect the soil from splash erosion and run-off. Gabions and check dams prevent flooding while contour farming conserves soil nutrient content.

The degree in which the use of these scientific ideas has shown to be useful is seen in water bodies, the ruggedness of land and agriculture. In water bodies, there should be a change in the acid level and saline level (Barker & Pilbeam, 2015). After rains, the salt and acid in the soil drain into water bodies, and there are effects from them. An effective science method will bring back these conditions to the initial state with time. The use of gabions and cover crops combat soil erosion, thus maintains the shape of the land. Rill and gully erosion bring about the existence of deep trenches on the land surface. By the use of gabions, the trenched disappears.

The postulation of these ideas has proved to be beneficial and thus has solved the problems associated with soil conservation. As for soil erosion, the cover crops cover the soil and prevent exposure of soil to direct rainwater. The practical result is unmoved soil. Crop rotation is used to conserve soil nutrient content (Van Der Heijden, De Bruin & Luckerhoff, 2016). The use of land without changing the crop planted leads to the depletion of nutrients. It is thus necessary to change the crops since there are crops that fix nitrogen. The use of manure instead of the fertilizers is useful in balancing the Ph of the soil. The use of fertilizers in yields is an unethical practice, and most cultures disallow. The indigenous organic product is viewed to be more nutritious.

Every activity has pros and cons. The dark side of these scientific methods used to combat soil conservation is as follows. When check dams are built, the main aim is to contain flooding. Although the intention is right, there are adverse collateral effects from them. The water catchment formed by the dam creates an environment for mosquitoes to breed. Mosquitoes spread malaria to the people living along the breeding zones. The check dams are affected by soil deposition. As time goes by, soil drained in water that is running accumulates at the base of the check dam.

Further accumulation results in filling the dam, rendering it useless. Also, these dams need maintenance, which comes at a cost. Also, the time required to restore nutrients to their original form takes time. Restoring soil nutrient content by the use of chemicals causes further destruction of the soil. Decreasing and limiting the use of fertilizers to desalinize the earth inhibits economic growth. The use of chemical fertilizers boosts agricultural production. Every farmer wants to have peak production. These limitations reduce profits.

In conclusion, all the above points are significant in addressing issues relating to soil conservation. To conserve soil is an activity that should be embraced by everyone. Science has played a pivotal role in ensuring the achievement of soil conservation. The use of methods to prevent further salinity of the soil, soil erosion, and maintain nutrients have proved to be fruitful in achieving their purpose. The ideas have enabled maintenance of the original state of the environment and the thriving of agriculture. Although the benefits of scientific practices outweigh the problems, consideration of the adverse effects is essential. The factors posed by science affect people economically, ethically, socially, culturally, morally, politically, and environmentally. It is thus possible to recommend the use of the scientific methods for soil conservation. This is because the benefits outweigh the losses. Further research on more techniques and the available means should be conducted to attain higher efficiency.


Barker, A. V., & Pilbeam, D. J. (2015). Handbook of plant nutrition. CRC press.

Schjoerring, J. K., Cakmak, I., & White, P. J. (2019). Plant nutrition and soil fertility:synergies for acquiring global green growth and sustainable development. Retrieved from

Van Der Heijden, M. G., De Bruin, S., Luckerhoff, L., Van Logtestijn, R. S., & Schlaeppi, K.(2016). A widespread plant-fungal-bacterial symbiosis promotes plant biodiversity,plant nutrition and seedling recruitment. The ISME journal, 10(2), 389. Retrieved from

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