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Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (1996)

Alley cropping Sorghum bicolor (L) Moench with Senna siamea and fertilization in the Sudan savanna zone of Ghana

Atibila, John Mbabugri

Titre : Alley cropping Sorghum bicolor (L) Moench with Senna siamea and fertilization in the Sudan savanna zone of Ghana

Auteur : Atibila, John Mbabugri

Université de soutenance : Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology

Grade : Master of Science in Agroforestry, 1996

Résumé
The relative contributions of a Senna siamea alley cropping system and application of inorganic fertilizer to the yield of Sorghum bicolor (L) Moench var ‘Belko” was investigated during two cropping seasons, at the Forestry Research Institute’s (FORIG) On-Station Experimental Plots in the Sudan Savanna zone at Kuka, near Bawku (11° 10’N ; 0O 15’W) in the Upper East Region of Ghana. The objectives of the experiment were to determine S. siamea pruning biomass and nutrient yields, weed suppression by the prunings as well as Sorghum crop performance under fertilizer and the prunings. Results showed that S. siamea prunings biomass were 104.6 kg/plot (8.7t/ha) in 1994 and 94.7 kg/plot (7.91/ha) in 1995. Nitrogen levels were 2.3 and 1.4% in first and second prunings respectively in 1994 with corresponding values of 1.9 and 1.5% in 1995. The proportion of foliage in 1994 was 49% and 51% in 1995. Residual fertilizer significantly increased S. siamea vigour in height increment (p = 0.004) and number of coppiced shoots (p = 0.016) and dry matter production (p 0.032) in the fertilized plots compared with the unfertilized plots. Mulching with or without fertilizer application significantly suppress grass weeds (p 0.000). Mulching with fertilizer application, however significantly promoted non-grass weed production (p = 0.000). Weed suppression was due to the cover effect of the mulch rather than canopy shading of the S. siamea hedgerows. Sorghum bicolor yield was in the order : fertilized sole cropping > fertilized alley cropping> unfertilized sole cropping> unfertilized alley cropping in 1994 but the unfertilized alley cropping performed better than the unfertilized sole cropping in 1995. Reduction in sorghum yield was attributed to competition for soil nutrients by the S. siamea hedgerows rather than by shading. The fertilized sole cropping system produced the highest yield but the Senna siamea/Sorghum bicolor alley cropping system with or without fertilizer application is more beneficial than the continuous sole cropping system since it provides fuelwood and poles as additional outputs which are in very short supply for communities in the severely deforested area. The alley cropping system is also quite sustainable as modest amounts of foliage and, hence, organic matter and nutrients are added to the severely degraded soils

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Page publiée le 27 mars 2018, mise à jour le 24 février 2020