Table of contents
About this book
The red soils of China are typical in their chemical, physical and mineralogical characteristics of red soils in other tropical and sub-tropical areas of the world, particularly in South America, Africa and south-east Asia. For the most part, these soils are highly weathered and inherently infertile. They are acidic, nutrient deficient, poor in organic matter and have a low water-holding and supplying capacity. They cannot sustain arable cropping systems without the most careful management and are highly susceptible to soil erosion, particularly on sloping land. It is the purpose of this book to present recent research showing how the problems associated with using the red soils in China for sustainable agricultural production can be overcome, using a variety of traditional and novel approaches. In principle, these approaches should be useful in other tropical and sub-tropical countries faced with the problem of making the best use of their fragile red soil resources. The term "in principle" is used deliberately because, of course, the different red soil countries invariably operate within dissimilar socio-economic frameworks. At the present time, China may be considered to be in the process of an "industrial revolution", rather like that that took place in Britain in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries.
Erosion biomass development production soil soil quality sustainability