Millet (Pennisetum typhoides) and sorghum are used as relay crops before or after main upland crops (i.e., maize, soybean, rice). They bring a range of beneficial functions and contribute to the improvement of the soil fertility. Both species produce high amount of biomass and have strong ability to recycle high amount of potassium. This nutrient will be brought back into the soil during the decomposition and mineralization process.
Collection of soybean, rice, and cover/relay crops. Our team perserves and produces seed for 40 species and over 350 cultivars. The use of a wide vegetal biodiversity is key in our approach to drive improved soil fertility, ensure higher water use efficiency, recycle nutrients, diversify the productions, mitigate and adapt farming systems to climate variability and climate change.
Stylosanthes guianensis (perennial legume) at the end of the dry season (May) before rolling. Stylo is used as a cover crop for wet season rice on sandy podzolic soil (80% sand) of Stung Chinit irrigation scheme (Kampong Thom province). After 4 years, the use of high and diversified biomass-C inputs allows an increase of the soil fertility (soil organic C & N, soil biological activity and improvement of soil properties)
The myth of becoming rich with annual cash crops farming was widely spreading in the early 2000s, where the soil was recently reclaimed and still fertile, and the price of cereals was increasing thanks to Thai markets. The farmers used to cultivate 2 crops per year like corn and corn as seen in the photo. Soil tillage is done at least twice for each crops leading rapid soil degradation, increasing weed populations and cost of chemical fertilizers.