Fertility capability classification (FCC) system is a technical soil classification system focusing quantitatively on physical and chemical properties of soil important to soil fertility management. Lowland rice cultivation is a major activity in Cameroon, where demand for the commodity is increasing amidst increasing production constraints. This study was intended to classify lowland rice soils in major rice-growing areas into fertility capability classes, identify soil fertility limitations to increased lowland rice cultivation, and identify research areas needed to boost and sustain rice yields. Secondary data of selected soils characterized for morphological, physical and chemical properties was used. Soil fertility limitations characterizing lowland rice producing areas in Cameroon were: Fe- and Al-toxicities (a), low nutrient capital reserves (k), high leaching potential (e), and micronutrient deficiencies (Fe and Zn). The lowland soils were classified as: Lagk, Cagk, Laegk, Cbgm, Caeg, Lbg, Lgk, Cgv, LCg and Cgv, which reflect these limitations. A high potential exists to increase national rice production in Cameroon through research aimed at reducing the effects of Al and Fe toxicity, increasing nutrient capital reserves based on appropriate cultural and chemical techniques.
Key words: Fertility capability classification, lowland rice, floodplains, Inland valleys, Cameroon.
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