World Soil Day was celebrated with Vrikshit Bharat Sankalp Yatra at Elayamuthur of Udumalpet taluk on Tuesday.
Addressing the participants, G. Ragothaman of Coconut Development Board said that this year's World Soil Day was being celebrated with the theme, 'soil and water as the source of life.' He emphasised the need for proper maintenance and protection of soil resources and highlighted that farmers should follow sustainable soil management practices, like minimum tillage, crop rotation, application of organic manure, use of bio-fertilizers and integrated nutrient management to improve soil fertility. Mr. Ragothaman advised them to follow only integrated crop protection systems and avoid the use of chemical fertilizers. Dr. Renuka Devi of Krishi Vigyan Kendra, Pongalur, explained the different methods of soil testing.
Those who addressed the farmers included National Food Security Adviser Arasappan and Agriculture Officers Sandhya, Sameera and Manickavalli. Soil testing was done for farmers in a mobile soil testing laboratory of the Department of Agriculture and Farmers' Welfare and soil health cards were distributed to them. The use of drones in agriculture was demonstrated by Madras Fertilizers. Mr. Marimuthu, panchayat president, welcomed the gathering and Assistant Agriculture Officer Muruganandam proposed a vote of thanks.