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International Journal of Research and Innovation in Applied Science (IJRIAS) |Volume VII, Issue XII, December 2022|ISSN 2454-6194

Impact of Slash and Burn Agricultural Practice on Selected Towns of Owerri West Local Government Area, Imo State, Nigeria

Dr. R.F. Njoku, Dr. C.C. Ejiogu*, and Duru, C.C.
Department of Environmental Management Technology, Federal University of Technology Owerri, P.M.B, Owerri Nigeria.
*Corresponding author

IJRISS Call for paper

Abstract: The objective of the study was to determine the effects of slash and burn farming practices on cultivated soils in a few communities in the Owerri West Local Government Area of Imo State, Nigeria. Stratified random sampling technique was adopted. Farmerland were selected at random from Owerri West Local Government Area. Soil sample were collected at a depth of 0-15cm from six different point before and after slash and burn using soil auger, bagged and labelled for laboratory analysis. The soil samples were then analyses: bulk density (BD), moisture content, total porosity, particles distribution, pH, exchangeable magnesium and calcium, total nitrogen, exchangeable acidity, exchangeable bases and acidity, effective cation exchange capacity and percentage base saturation. pH, Organic Carbon (OC), Organic Matter (OM), and Nitrogen contents in soil of the various research locations ranged from 3.38-6.66 (4.030.25), 1.18-6.66 (2.530.28), 2.04-6.16 (4.050.27), and 0.11-0.38 (0.250.02) percent, respectively. Available Phosphorus (Av.P) varied from 3.55-7.28 (5.550.36) mg/g, Ca ions varied from 0.05-2.64 (0.480.17) mg/g, and Mg ion concentrations varied from 0.15-0.63 (0.280.04) Cmol/kg. Base Saturation (BS) varied from 10.18-94.33 (30.717.21) percent. Acidity and Al ions, as well as K and Na ions, ranged from 0.06-0.77 (0.130.04), 0.53-0.88 (0.660.03), 0.40-4.83 (3.520.29), and 0.00-2.62 (1.700.20) Cmol/kg. Cation Exchange Capacity (CEC) was 2.57-11.00 (8.000.55) Cmol/kg, while Mn ions were 1.10-19.20 (5.391.25) mg/g. Fe ions ranged from 70.60 to 233.00 mg/g (113.598.02), Cu ions from 0.50 to 1.10 mg/g (0.750.04), and Zn ions from 3.33-6.70 mg/g (5.750.17). Chemical parameter concentrations differed between the burned and unburned sampling areas. The mean (SE) concentrations of pH, KCl, OC, OM, and Available P at the burnt areas were 4.0 (0.34), 3.21 (0.17), 2.95 (0.48), 4.42 (0.22), and 5.82 (0.58) mg/g, respectively.. At the burnt areas, mean concentrations of BS, Fe, Zn, CEC, and Mn ions were 31.53 (11.40) percent, 109.12 (7.52) mg/g, 5.41 (0.27) mg/g, 8.58 (0.73) Cmol/kg, and 5.11 (1.80) mg/g, respectively, and 29.89 (9.54) percent, 118.06 (14.56) mg/g, 6.10 (0.14) mg/g, 7.41 ( Cu, Acidity, and Al ion concentrations were 0.800 (0.06) mg/g, 3.91 (0.43) Cmol/kg, and 1.75 (0.32) Cmol/kg, respectively, in burnt locations. Only the mean Zn concentration differed substantially (Sig. Fvalue=0.036) between the burnt and unburnt areas at the p0.05 level using ANOVA. There were also correlation coefficients between the chemical parameters of burned and non-burned soils. Soil sample from Obinze and Ihiagwa after slash burn was slightly acidic whereas that of Eziobodo was within a preferable range for plants. Soil samples from Obinze and Ihiagwa has a low percentage of organic matter and nitrogen and could be conducive for some acid-sensitive crops. However, future research work should investigate the Effects of soil temperature on some soil properties and plant growth.


The Nigerian economy revolves round farming. More than 30 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) generated in this country comes from agriculture, employs approximately 68 percent of the workforce and it is also responsible for more than 70% exports that are not related to oil, and equally provides food more than 80% of the food consumed in Nigeria (Anderson, 2017).