Early mulching increases yields
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CTA. 1990. Early mulching increases yields. Spore 27. CTA, Wageningen, The Netherlands.
Permanent link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10568/45294
In alley-farming the greatest effect on crop yields comes when tree foliage is applied as a mulch just before the crop is planted. Therefore prunings cut later in the season can be fed to livestock without depriving the crop. Trials in Nigeria's...
In alley-farming the greatest effect on crop yields comes when tree foliage is applied as a mulch just before the crop is planted. Therefore prunings cut later in the season can be fed to livestock without depriving the crop. Trials in Nigeria's humid zone show that maize mulched with Leucaena and Gliricidia foliage one week before planting yielded 4.35t/ha nearly 30% more than unmulched crops. Those crops that received additional mulching during the season increased yields by a further 0.5t/ha. These are some of the findings reported in the 1988 Annual Report of the International Livestock Centre for Africa. The report suggests that if livestock are integrated into the alley-farming system, soil fertility and crop yields can be maintained i! farmers use prunings taken only later in the season for animal fodder. lf that foliage IS used to supplement the feed of sheep and goats during pregnancy and lactation, there is a reduction in the mortality rate of lambs and kids. Feeding trials in Ethiopia have shown that local, high-protein feeds such as cowpea hay or Acacia tortilis seed pods are just as effective, as protein supplements for livestock, as lucerne. These trials highlight the need to look more closely at indigenous feeds. The International Livestock Centre for Africa - PO Box 5689 Addis Abeba - ETHIOPIA