Soils/Erosion

Best practice methods to mitigate erosion include silt traps, earth bunds, deep ripping, paddock contouring, cover crops, wheel track ripping and dyking and riparian planting are ways to mitigate sediment loss to cropping land. The suitability of these methods varies from site to site depending on any number of conditions and circumstances. Industry best practice guidance can be found in the “Erosion and Sediment control guidelines for vegetable production – Good Management Practices” published by Horticulture New Zealand which sets out methods and practices to manage soil loss through surface water runoff and soil erosion.

Example: Hawkes Bay - Wind erosion

Planting secondary crops alongside a regular vegetable crop can stabilise soil and reduce erosion. To address wind erosion some Hawke’s Bay growers have  planted “strips of maize within squash crops, while others in the region have used strips of cereals within onion crops to slow wind speeds and reduce wind erosion. An added benefit is that sensitive vegetable crops are protected from the abrasive effects of wind-blown soil.” 4161

Erosion deriving from water may also be modified by planting a temporary secondary cover crop to reduce erosion losses from fallow land between crops, with the soil further benefiting from the return of organic material back into the soil.

A useful resource from Horticulture New Zealand: “Holding it together” can be found by clicking here

  1. PR Johnstone, DR Wallace, N Arnold N, D Bloomer Holding it together – soils for sustainable vegetable production (Horticulture New Zealand, July 2011) at 24.

Last updated at 11:04AM on November 27, 2015