Ecology, Environment and Conservation Paper

Vol 23, Issue 2, 2017; Page No.(1085-1092)

EFFECT OF LAND MANAGEMENT MODELS ON SOIL EROSION IN WET TROPICAL CACAO PLANTATIONS IN INDONESIA

Suhardi, Ahmad Munir, Sitti Nur Faridah, Totok Prawitosari and Suhardy Palimbu

Abstract

Indonesia is one of the world’s largest cocoa exporters and is located in a tropical wet region. In tropical regions, surface run off is a major factor behind the occurrence of erosion-driven land degradation. Both land slope and land cover influence the magnitude of surface run off and soil erosion. Cocoa plants are generally cultivated on land that has a steep slope without regard to existing land cover conditions resulting in a susceptability to soil erosion. The purpose of this research was to measure the influence of land management models used in cocoa plantations on soil erosion caused by surface run off. Soil erosion measurements were performed in situ using soil erosion plot models. Soil erosion plots were constructed in six different land conditions based on a combination of land slope (22 – 60%) and land cover or litter distribution (50 – 100%). Results of this researched showed that: 1) erosion was an exponential function of rainfall at all land slopes; 2) the amount of shade influenced theinitial soil moisture content; and 3) land cover is the primary factor behind soil erosion in cocoa plantation.

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