Land suitability assessment for wheatbarley cultivation in a semi-arid region of Eastern Anatolia in Turkey

Sargın B., Karaca S.

PeerJ, vol.11, 2023 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 11
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.7717/peerj.16396
  • Journal Name: PeerJ
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, BIOSIS, MEDLINE, Veterinary Science Database, Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Keywords: AHP, GIS, Suitability analysis, Sustainable land use, Wheat-barley cultivation
  • Van Yüzüncü Yıl University Affiliated: Yes


The efficient use and sustainability of agricultural lands depend heavily on the characteristics of soil resources in a given area, as different soil properties can significantly impact crop growth and yield. Therefore, land suitability studies play a crucial role in determining the appropriate crops for a given area and ensuring sustainable agricultural practices. This study, conducted in Tusba District-Van, Turkey, represents a significant advancement in land suitability studies for wheat-barley cultivation. Using geographic information systems, the analytical hierarchical process method, and the standard scoring function, lands were determined based on the examined criteria for the suitability of wheat-barley cultivation. One of this study's main findings is identifying critical factors that influence the suitability of land for wheat-barley cultivation. These factors include slope, organic matter content, available water capacity, soil depth, cation exchange capacity, pH level, and clay content. It is important to note that slope is the most influential factor, followed by organic matter content and available water capacity. A Soil Quality Index map was produced, and the suitability of wheat-barley production in the studied area was demonstrated. More than 28% of the study area was very suitable for wheat-barley production (S2), and more than was 39% moderately suitable (S3). A positive regression (R2 D 0:67) was found between soil quality index values and crop yield. The relationship between soil quality index values and crop yield is above acceptable limits. Land suitability assessment can minimize labor and cost losses in the planning and implementation of sustainable ecological and economic agriculture. Furthermore, land suitability classes play an active role in the selection of the product pattern of the area by presenting a spatial decision support system.