Intercropping is a useful cropping system which allows the component crops to interact with accessible growth resources such as solar radiation, soil nutrients, moisture as well as temperature by following agronomic principles1. This system offers more effectual utilization of moisture, solar radiation and nutrients2. Additionally, other advantages of this system also exist which is definitely a plus point. These include reduction in the negative impact of weeds, as well as insect pests which ultimately improve the crop yield as well as yield quality.
These useful aspects motivated Mbah, Emmanuel Ukaobasi3 to conduct a research for evaluating the impact of sequential planting of vegetable cowpea on crop growth, yield and productivity of component crops in cassava and cowpea intercrop and to determine the nutrient status of the soil at harvest.
Accordingly, Cowpea is a significant food and forage crop as well as a precious commodity crop for farmers in the humid agro-ecological zone of Nigeria4. This crop is crucial economically in sustainable farming systems because it can fix atmospheric nitrogen in the soil, therefore, plays a key role in soil modifications4,5.
While Cassava is considered as the most leading food security crops in West Africa and a source of animal feed and industrial raw material for bio-energy4,6. Cassava as well as vegetable cowpea mixes enhance diets, soil fertility as well as improve the overall crop production.
Mbah, Emmanuel Ukaobasi3 used 4 cassava cultivars intercropped with vegetable cowpea, which were grown by utilizing sequential method in the system (NR 8082//cowpea, TMS 30572//cowpea, TME 419//cowpea, TMS 98/0505//cowpea) as well as their respective mono-crops. Scientist used randomized complete block design having 3 replications at Umudike (05°29’N, 07°33’E, 122 m.a.s.l.), Southeastern Nigeria.
At the end of the experiment, intercropping of NR 8082cassava cultivar with vegetable cowpea was found to exhibit elevated yields than other intercrops. However, according to financial examination, on the basis of total gross monetary return (TGMR), net return (NR) and benefit cost ratio(BCR), TMS 98/0505//cowpea intercrop was gave more production in both mono and intercrop. Conclusively, scientist suggested intercropping TMS 98/0505 cassava cultivar with cowpea in the particular region for higher yield and desired results.
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17 November, 2019