; Net Benefit of the Use of Crotolaria juncea L as a Conservation Practice in Puerto Rico | Conferences | AgRisk Library


Conference Name Net Benefit of the Use of Crotolaria juncea L as a Conservation Practice in Puerto Rico

Yaira Aviles, Gladys González-Martínez, and Alexandra Gregory


Cover crops as a conservation practice assures the farmer agronomic, personal, and social benefits that could exceed its costs, especially when continued performing for long periods of time. In Puerto Rico, where farmers face climatic, social and resource limitations, using this practice can be a tool to mitigate important risks in production. In Puerto Rico, it is common to find farmers who use conservation practices to solve problems derived from soil topography. For example, contour farming is a common practice among some farmers. However, other highly beneficial practices for the farmer are not typically implemented, in some way due to misinformation.

Crotalaria juncea L, an herbaceous plant commonly used as a cover crop since it has characteristics such as fixing nitrogen in the soil, can be used as green manure and is resistant to periods of drought. The costs and the benefits of utilizing Crotalaria juncea L as a soil conservation practice in Puerto Rico were identified and compared A partial budget considering costs and benefits will be presented in this poster. Based on our findings, we concluded that using the conservation practice would provide the farmer a net benefit of $2,382.16 per cuerda (0.9712 acres) after the first year of establishing the practice, assuming tomato as the main crop. These findings lead us to conclude that it is feasible to use the practice described, especially due to the ecosystem services it provides and the benefits it represents for the farmer.