FORAGE YIELD POTENTIAL OF DOUBLE-RED MAIZE (ZEA MAYS L.) INTERCROPPED WITH TEPHROSIA (TEPHROSIA BRACTEOLATA GUILL AND PERR.) IN SHIKA NORTHERN GUINEA SAVANNAH

U. Abdullahi, J. T. Amodu, M. R. Hassan, A. M. Abdullahi, Y. M. Ishiaku, S. A. Ahmed, S. G. Salisu, U. S. Jibril, B. M. Munza

Abstract


The study was conducted to evaluate the agronomic potential of Double-red maize intercropped with Tephrosia bracteolata at the Breeder Seed Unit of National Animal Production Research Institute Shika, Zaria. The experiment was laid out in a 6×2×3 factorial arrangement in Randomized Complete Block Design (RCBD) with three replicates, which consists of four intercropping pattern (1:1, 1:2, 2:1 and 2:2 maize/T. bracteolata intra-row ratio) with sole maize and sole T. bracteolata, two plant spacing (25×60cm and 50×60cm) and three replications. Seedling emergence averaged 74.85% for maize and 79.35% for T. bracteolata. Plant height, number of leaves per plant and leaf area index (LAI) of maize and T. bracteolata and number of branches of T. bracteolata were significantly (P<0.05) affected by intercropping. There was no significant (p>0.05) effect of plant spacing on all growth components except plant height and LAI of maize. Plant height, number leaves per plant and LAI were significantly (P<0.05) affected by age of plant. The highest plant height (169.13cm), number of leaves per plant (12.00) and LAI (2.63) of maize were obtained at 12WAS. Fresh and dry matter yields were significantly (P<0.05) affected by intercropping pattern. The highest fresh forage yield (26.47 and 28.94t/ha) and dry matter yield (6.17 and 5.90t/ha) of maize and T. bracteolata, respectively were observed in sole treatments. Maize grain yield and land equivalent ratio were significantly (P<0.05) affected by intercropping. The highest value of 3.04t/ha for maize grain was recorded in sole maize treatment while the highest Land Equivalent Ratio LERs (1.50and 1.39) were recorded in 1:1 and 2:1 maize/T. bracteolata mixtures, respectively. Interactions significantly (P<0.05) affected only T. bracteolata forages. The study showed that among all intercropped mixtures, the 1:1 maize/T. bracteolata was preferable according to forage yield and maize grain yield than other intercropped mixtures. Plant spacing of 25×60cm had better nutrient compositions for maize forage. Intercropping Double-red maize with T. bracteolata in 1:1 intra-row ratio at plant spacing of 25×60cm is hereby recommended for smallholder farmers and livestock owners in Shika, Northern Guinea Savanna of Nigeria.


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