The Nigerian Institute of Soil Science has supported Bauchi State Agricultural Development Programme, BASDP with nine soil testing kits to enhance soil fertility tests in the state.
Professor Saminu Ibrahim, Northeast Zonal Coordinator of the Institute stated this in Itas Gadau local government area of Bauchi State during a greenfield day.
According to the Coordinator, the importance of soil tests to farmers cannot be overemphasized as it gives the farmer a prior knowledge of the nutrients needed by the soil and problems to be corrected in the soils for high yield.
He said that soil acidity and alkalinity are some of the problems that hinder nutrient uptake by plants and can only be traced through Soil testing and corrected easily through liming as done in the demonstration plots.
Professor Saminu Ibrahim said that there is a need for farmers to have prior knowledge of the status of soils before planting.
Abubakar Jafaru Ilela, the Program Manager Bauchi State Agricultural Development Program, commended the institute for collaborating with BSADP to disseminate new farming technologies to farmers in the state.
He called on farmers that participated at the event drawn from other local governments to extend the knowledge acquired to their various places for the benefit of farmers that could not make it to the programme.
He added that the soil testing kits donated to BSADP would be distributed to Village Extension Agents so as to assist farmers to know the status of their soils.
Earlier speaking, the lead researcher, Professor A M Hassan said the essence of the brownfield day is for the farmers and extension agents to see for themselves the effects of different management practices of problematic soils on the crops at harvesting time.
Haladu Garba Melandige the farmer on whose farm the demonstration took place said at the beginning of the project that they did not pay much attention but considering the outcome of the project, all farmers of Melandige will not take for granted soil testing in the future before planting.