Forest Soil Quality and Potentials for Food Systems Health in the Takamanda National Park in South Western Cameroon
Natural Resources (NR)
is？therefore of vital importance in safeguarding global food security. This paper evaluates the physical and chemical properties？of soils in the rainforest of the Takamanda in Southwestern Cameroon and their implications？on？agricultural productivity and food security. Soils were randomly sampled using a bucket soil auger at the left, middle and right flank of the 50 ha Takamanda forest dynamic plot. Soils were sampled from three flanks at depths of 0 - 10 cm, 10 - 20 cm and 20 - 30 cm. Bulk density increased with soil depth in all the flanks. Soil nitrogen, organic carbon, potassium, magnesium, sodium, phosphorus and cation exchange capacity were greater in topsoil (0 - 10 cm) than subsoils. Soil Ca and pH were slightly greater at 20 - 30 cm soil depths with value of 0.45 cmol (+)/kg and 4.24 respectively. Soil C/N ratio was highest (13.12) in 10 - 20 cm soil depth though it was not significantly different from the other soil depths. To promote food production, an integrated cost-effective approach to soil management should comprise the use of acid-tolerant species of crop plants, efficient use of fertilizers, suitable crop rotations, crop diversification and agroforestry.