Restoration of terre de barre fertility using pigeonpea grown in rotation or intercropping with maize in the derived savanna of Benin

SCIENTIFIC PUBLICATION

AVAILABLE FROM
International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT)

AUTHORS

K Aihou, Nteranya Sanginga, Bernard Vanlauwe, J. Diels, R Merkx, O. van Cleemput

SUMMARY

The following nine main cropping systems were evaluated: maize/maize in rotation without N-fertilizer (control); maize/cowpea in rotation where maize received N-fertilizer; maize/pigeonpea intercropping without N-fertilizer; maize/cowpea/pigeonpea in rotation where maize received N-fertilizer; maize/maize in rotation with N-fertilizer; maize/pigeonpea fallow in rotation where maize received N-fertilizer; maize/pigeonpea intercropping where maize received N-fertilizer; pigeonpea/maize/cowpea in rotation where maize received N-fertilizer; pigeonpea/maize/maize where maize received N-fertilizer. The rate of N-fertilizer applied was 74 kg N as urea (28 kg N/ha 2 weeks after planting maize and 46 kg N/ha 6 weeks after planting maize). Compared to the control, the increase in maize grain yield ranged from 1.55 to 215 % for all cropping systems receiving N-fertilizer and intercropping without N-fertilizer, maize grain yield in intercropping without N-fertilizer increased by 9 % in first year and decreased by 1.55 % in second year compared to the control. The maize stover yield with N-fertilizer application increased by -24 up to 203 %. Pigeonpea grain yield (in intercropping) without N-fertilizer was 56 % higher than with N-fertilizer. Pigeonpea as fallow produced 73-97 % more fresh wood than intercropped pigeonpea without fertilization and 91-118 % more fresh wood than intercropped pigeonpea with N-fertilizer. The intercropped Cajanus cajan with N-fertilizer produced 11 % less fresh wood than intercropped without N-fertilizer. The total N amount in the maize grain yield increased by 5-245 % for the first season of year 1 compared to the control and increased by 241-260 % for the second season of year 1 compared to the control. The total N amount in the maize grain of the intercropped pigeonpea/maize with N-fertilizer was 190 % higher than the intercropped pigeonpea/maize without N-fertilizer. The total amount of P follows the same trend as N- fertilizer in intercropped systems. The yield efficiency was low in year 1 compared to year 2. The Land Equivalent Ratio (LER) was higher in cropping system without N-fertilizer than with N-fertilizer

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