Contour farming, the practice of tilling sloped land along lines of consistent elevation in order to conserve rainwater and to reduce soil losses from surface erosion. These objectives are achieved by means of furrows, crop rows, and wheel tracks across slopes, all of which act as reservoirs to catch and retain rainwater, thus permitting increased infiltration and more uniform distribution of the water.
Contour farming has been practiced for centuries in parts of the world where irrigation farming is important.
The practice has been proved to reduce fertilizer loss, power and time consumption, and wear on machines, as well as to increase crop yields and reduce erosion. Contour farming is most effective when used in conjunction with such practices as strip cropping, terracing, and water diversion.
How Contour Farming helps…
- Contouring can reduce soil erosion by as much as 50% from up and down hill farming
- By reducing sediment and runoff, and increasing water infiltration, contouring promotes better water quality
Benefits of Contour Farming
- Soil Erosion
- Water Quality