Managing clay soil

Hi Ramu,

What plants and trees would you suggest?

Hi friend!
Just take a nice and casual look at your piece of land, see for slope gradient, look for natural drainage or otherwise devise a plan for cheapest way of drainage as per the nature of land, have a climatic data of that particular place spanning over at least 20-25 years based on which choose multiple mixed crops with an inclusion of either dairy animals or poultry.This is a way to sure success of farming activities in clay based soil. I dont know what is the clay percentage of that particular soil in question for crop recommendation. However, general advise is that if clay percentage is >50 Thorny bushes and haryali and cypress grass only will grow well. If clay p.c. is between 40-50 then,it will support trees like Eukalyptus, Mangium( autralian teak which fix atmospheric nitrogen in soil and naturally improve fertility status of soil and its structure and texture) and indian gooseberry. if clay p.c. is 35-40, it may support Teak , particularly tissue culture sapplings which grow fast than native teak plant and jack too comes well.If clay p.c. is between 30- 35, then it may support fruit trees like sapota, guava,ber and pomegranate. If you rear cow, then fodder crops like velimasal, subabul may be cultivated. Ocimum ( tulsi) may also come well.Soil with clay p.c.less than 30 is nothing serious as regards crop cultivation. More than that, before going for crop selection, let your self see for any other plants in the sorroundings and make a phenomenal study of its growth behaviour.As for as cultivation in clay soil is concerned , above listed points must be taken into account for successful farming business.

Murali / Chandra,

Was there any luck in reviving the soil for horti use or did you go the route recommended by Ramu. Its been near 5 years this thread was stopped, any one had any luck in improving the soil condition

Certainly not from Murali: … ry-murali/

Sorry about that Chandra  :frowning: :frowning:

Clay soil these days looks to be common factor due to improper rain water management in the past, and/or possible use of excessive fertilizers. According to me there are two ways out for this

  1. Convert the clay soil to regular cultivatable land
  2. Live with it happily and get moderate to good yields using specific crops.

In principal this looks manageable but real success stories does motivate a lot . Any experience in this regard will be very helpful.

Chandra can you share your experience in handling clay soil.

I don’t have much experience in handling clay soil, but I need it now :slight_smile:

My belief is that it is logical to fit the crops to the soil than try changing the soil. Some level of correction with FYM, lime etc. may be practical but correcting the volumes of soil over many acres is just not realistic.

I think there are several field crops and a few horticultural crops that grow in clays - need to research and list them out.

Thanks Chandra,

I think with the growing problem it is imperative that we probably have to live with it for longer duration while reviving it.

Can the seniors / experts of the forum throw some light on the field crops/ horticulture crops that can be planted in clay soil.

You can grow Graviola (soursop)… heard it has a very good market and goes retail upto rs 2000 per kg… comes up nicely in clay soil…

I strongly feel you should write a wiki page on the subject.  :slight_smile: