Small scale farmers have been advised to use locally obtained organic manure in fertility retention to the soil in their farm lands.
Speaking during an Innovative Platform meeting held in Chipata yesterday, Principal Agricultural Research Officer Josephine Matibini says locally produced manure is cheap as compared to chemical manure.
Ms. Matibini says that according to the research, organic fertilizer is easy to obtain locally adding that chemical fertilizer requires a lot of money for a small scale farmer.
She says researchers at Msekera Research Station have embarked on soil sampling from various farm lands to determine what kind of organic manure and chemical fertilizer a farmer can use.
Ms. Matibini says a lot of small scale farmers have failed to meet the charges, which the researchers ask them to pay to have soil tested in their farmlands.
She added that the other way of returning soil fertility is by adopting intercropping farming where two different crops are grown in one farm land.
Ms. Matibini says crops such as cow peas and pigeon peas can be grown together with maize in one plot adding that according to the research, this kind of farming has proved to be the cheapest way of fertility retention to the soil.