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9th International Rainwater Catchment Systems Conference
"Rainwater Catchment: An Answer to the Water Scarcity of the Next Millennium."
Petrolina, Brazil - July 1999

Section 8: Rainwater Catchment Systems in Agriculture

Paper 8.6

Methods of "In Situ" Rainwater Catchment

José Barbosa dos Anjos, Paulo Roberto Coelho Lopes, Luiza Teixeira de Lima & Maria Sônia Lopes da Silva
EMBRAPA - Semi-árido
Caixa Postal 23
56.300-000, Petrolina -PE, Brasil


In Brazil's semiarid region, rainfall patterns are an important factor for the success of rain-fed agriculture. Erratic and uneven rainfall is the main cause of crop losses. The traditional planting system in the semiarid region is pit seeding in a level surface, using a hoe, forming a little pit capable of catching and storing a limited amount of water. Apparently, this system seems to cause no harm to the environment. However, since the soil has not been ploughed, its surface becomes slightly compacted, making infiltration more difficult and run-off easier. Therefore "in situ" rainwater catchments are more suitable to the existing planting systems and they can be implemented with the help of machines or animals. The most used "in situ" rainwater catching practices in Brazil's semiarid region are: pre- and post-seeding furrowing, stopped furrows, W system, partial plowing and the Guimarães Duque system. The more suitable rainwater collection systems for semiarid farming conditions are presented in this paper.

PDF of full document (8pp, 110kb)

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