Impact of no-tillage and mulching practices on cotton production in North Cameroon: a multi-locational on-farm assessment

K. Naudin, E. Gozé, O. Balarabe, K.E. Giller, E. Scopel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

39 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The applicability of conservation agriculture (CA) in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) is poorly documented. In the “Nord” and “Extrême-Nord” provinces of Cameroon, in a 2-year rotation between a cereal (maize or sorghum) and cotton, conventional techniques were compared with CA. The study was conducted from 2001 to 2006 in 662 plots in 243 farmers’ fields. Cereal treatments compared were conventional management techniques and CA consisting in the production of mulch using cover crops (Brachiaria ruziziensis, Crotalaria retusa, Dolichos lablab, Mucuna pruriens, Vigna unguiculata) intercropped within the cereal. In the “Extrême-Nord” province up to 9.7 t ha-1 of vegetative biomass was produced in the CA plots with sorghum and cover crops against up to 4.8 t ha-1 for sorghum alone in conventional plots. In the “Nord” province maize + cover crops produced up to 5.2 t ha-1 of biomass against up to 2.5 t ha-1 for maize alone. In both provinces, the cereal grain yields were equivalent or higher in CA compared to conventional plots. In 18 fields of the “Extrême-Nord” province the mulch remaining the year after sorghum + B. ruziziensis is mainly comprised between 3 t ha-1 and 5 t ha-1. Cotton treatments compared were T (tillage), NT (no tillage), and NTM (no tillage with mulch). In both provinces these treatments differed in soil cover, number of localized herbicide sprays used, ridging, and amount of nitrogen fertilizer used. In the “Extrême-Nord” province treatments differed also for the number of weeding and the date of the first weeding. In the “Extrême-Nord” province cotton yields were 12% lower for T and 24% lower for NT than for NTM. Cotton yields were regressed on crop husbandry indicators and used inputs. After a manual backward removal in a multiple linear regression respectively no parameters were found to significantly influence yield for T, only one parameter for NT, the number of herbicide sprays used at sowing, and three parameters for NTM: difference between heavy clay and silty loam, application of NPK fertilizer, sowing date. In the “Nord” province no difference in cotton yield was observed between T, NT and NTM. The flowering period was longer for NTM vs NT in the “Extrême-Nord” and the “Nord” provinces and NTM vs T in the “Nord” province, respectively 13, 9 and 8 days. Although we show that CA techniques can have benefits at field level, further studies are needed to assess their suitability at farm and village levels.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)68-76
JournalSoil & Tillage Research
Volume108
Issue number1-2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2010

Fingerprint

mulching
zero tillage
Cameroon
no-tillage
cotton
mulch
farm
farms
sorghum
agriculture
Sorghum (Poaceae)
cereal
cover crop
cover crops
Urochloa ruziziensis
maize
spray
corn
weed control
herbicide

Keywords

  • conservation tillage
  • cropping systems
  • soil-erosion
  • cover crops
  • agriculture
  • africa
  • yield
  • constraints
  • management
  • revolution

Cite this

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title = "Impact of no-tillage and mulching practices on cotton production in North Cameroon: a multi-locational on-farm assessment",
abstract = "The applicability of conservation agriculture (CA) in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) is poorly documented. In the “Nord” and “Extr{\^e}me-Nord” provinces of Cameroon, in a 2-year rotation between a cereal (maize or sorghum) and cotton, conventional techniques were compared with CA. The study was conducted from 2001 to 2006 in 662 plots in 243 farmers’ fields. Cereal treatments compared were conventional management techniques and CA consisting in the production of mulch using cover crops (Brachiaria ruziziensis, Crotalaria retusa, Dolichos lablab, Mucuna pruriens, Vigna unguiculata) intercropped within the cereal. In the “Extr{\^e}me-Nord” province up to 9.7 t ha-1 of vegetative biomass was produced in the CA plots with sorghum and cover crops against up to 4.8 t ha-1 for sorghum alone in conventional plots. In the “Nord” province maize + cover crops produced up to 5.2 t ha-1 of biomass against up to 2.5 t ha-1 for maize alone. In both provinces, the cereal grain yields were equivalent or higher in CA compared to conventional plots. In 18 fields of the “Extr{\^e}me-Nord” province the mulch remaining the year after sorghum + B. ruziziensis is mainly comprised between 3 t ha-1 and 5 t ha-1. Cotton treatments compared were T (tillage), NT (no tillage), and NTM (no tillage with mulch). In both provinces these treatments differed in soil cover, number of localized herbicide sprays used, ridging, and amount of nitrogen fertilizer used. In the “Extr{\^e}me-Nord” province treatments differed also for the number of weeding and the date of the first weeding. In the “Extr{\^e}me-Nord” province cotton yields were 12{\%} lower for T and 24{\%} lower for NT than for NTM. Cotton yields were regressed on crop husbandry indicators and used inputs. After a manual backward removal in a multiple linear regression respectively no parameters were found to significantly influence yield for T, only one parameter for NT, the number of herbicide sprays used at sowing, and three parameters for NTM: difference between heavy clay and silty loam, application of NPK fertilizer, sowing date. In the “Nord” province no difference in cotton yield was observed between T, NT and NTM. The flowering period was longer for NTM vs NT in the “Extr{\^e}me-Nord” and the “Nord” provinces and NTM vs T in the “Nord” province, respectively 13, 9 and 8 days. Although we show that CA techniques can have benefits at field level, further studies are needed to assess their suitability at farm and village levels.",
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author = "K. Naudin and E. Goz{\'e} and O. Balarabe and K.E. Giller and E. Scopel",
year = "2010",
doi = "10.1016/j.still.2010.03.002",
language = "English",
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pages = "68--76",
journal = "Soil & Tillage Research",
issn = "0167-1987",
publisher = "Elsevier",
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Impact of no-tillage and mulching practices on cotton production in North Cameroon: a multi-locational on-farm assessment. / Naudin, K.; Gozé, E.; Balarabe, O.; Giller, K.E.; Scopel, E.

In: Soil & Tillage Research, Vol. 108, No. 1-2, 2010, p. 68-76.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Impact of no-tillage and mulching practices on cotton production in North Cameroon: a multi-locational on-farm assessment

AU - Naudin, K.

AU - Gozé, E.

AU - Balarabe, O.

AU - Giller, K.E.

AU - Scopel, E.

PY - 2010

Y1 - 2010

N2 - The applicability of conservation agriculture (CA) in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) is poorly documented. In the “Nord” and “Extrême-Nord” provinces of Cameroon, in a 2-year rotation between a cereal (maize or sorghum) and cotton, conventional techniques were compared with CA. The study was conducted from 2001 to 2006 in 662 plots in 243 farmers’ fields. Cereal treatments compared were conventional management techniques and CA consisting in the production of mulch using cover crops (Brachiaria ruziziensis, Crotalaria retusa, Dolichos lablab, Mucuna pruriens, Vigna unguiculata) intercropped within the cereal. In the “Extrême-Nord” province up to 9.7 t ha-1 of vegetative biomass was produced in the CA plots with sorghum and cover crops against up to 4.8 t ha-1 for sorghum alone in conventional plots. In the “Nord” province maize + cover crops produced up to 5.2 t ha-1 of biomass against up to 2.5 t ha-1 for maize alone. In both provinces, the cereal grain yields were equivalent or higher in CA compared to conventional plots. In 18 fields of the “Extrême-Nord” province the mulch remaining the year after sorghum + B. ruziziensis is mainly comprised between 3 t ha-1 and 5 t ha-1. Cotton treatments compared were T (tillage), NT (no tillage), and NTM (no tillage with mulch). In both provinces these treatments differed in soil cover, number of localized herbicide sprays used, ridging, and amount of nitrogen fertilizer used. In the “Extrême-Nord” province treatments differed also for the number of weeding and the date of the first weeding. In the “Extrême-Nord” province cotton yields were 12% lower for T and 24% lower for NT than for NTM. Cotton yields were regressed on crop husbandry indicators and used inputs. After a manual backward removal in a multiple linear regression respectively no parameters were found to significantly influence yield for T, only one parameter for NT, the number of herbicide sprays used at sowing, and three parameters for NTM: difference between heavy clay and silty loam, application of NPK fertilizer, sowing date. In the “Nord” province no difference in cotton yield was observed between T, NT and NTM. The flowering period was longer for NTM vs NT in the “Extrême-Nord” and the “Nord” provinces and NTM vs T in the “Nord” province, respectively 13, 9 and 8 days. Although we show that CA techniques can have benefits at field level, further studies are needed to assess their suitability at farm and village levels.

AB - The applicability of conservation agriculture (CA) in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) is poorly documented. In the “Nord” and “Extrême-Nord” provinces of Cameroon, in a 2-year rotation between a cereal (maize or sorghum) and cotton, conventional techniques were compared with CA. The study was conducted from 2001 to 2006 in 662 plots in 243 farmers’ fields. Cereal treatments compared were conventional management techniques and CA consisting in the production of mulch using cover crops (Brachiaria ruziziensis, Crotalaria retusa, Dolichos lablab, Mucuna pruriens, Vigna unguiculata) intercropped within the cereal. In the “Extrême-Nord” province up to 9.7 t ha-1 of vegetative biomass was produced in the CA plots with sorghum and cover crops against up to 4.8 t ha-1 for sorghum alone in conventional plots. In the “Nord” province maize + cover crops produced up to 5.2 t ha-1 of biomass against up to 2.5 t ha-1 for maize alone. In both provinces, the cereal grain yields were equivalent or higher in CA compared to conventional plots. In 18 fields of the “Extrême-Nord” province the mulch remaining the year after sorghum + B. ruziziensis is mainly comprised between 3 t ha-1 and 5 t ha-1. Cotton treatments compared were T (tillage), NT (no tillage), and NTM (no tillage with mulch). In both provinces these treatments differed in soil cover, number of localized herbicide sprays used, ridging, and amount of nitrogen fertilizer used. In the “Extrême-Nord” province treatments differed also for the number of weeding and the date of the first weeding. In the “Extrême-Nord” province cotton yields were 12% lower for T and 24% lower for NT than for NTM. Cotton yields were regressed on crop husbandry indicators and used inputs. After a manual backward removal in a multiple linear regression respectively no parameters were found to significantly influence yield for T, only one parameter for NT, the number of herbicide sprays used at sowing, and three parameters for NTM: difference between heavy clay and silty loam, application of NPK fertilizer, sowing date. In the “Nord” province no difference in cotton yield was observed between T, NT and NTM. The flowering period was longer for NTM vs NT in the “Extrême-Nord” and the “Nord” provinces and NTM vs T in the “Nord” province, respectively 13, 9 and 8 days. Although we show that CA techniques can have benefits at field level, further studies are needed to assess their suitability at farm and village levels.

KW - conservation tillage

KW - cropping systems

KW - soil-erosion

KW - cover crops

KW - agriculture

KW - africa

KW - yield

KW - constraints

KW - management

KW - revolution

U2 - 10.1016/j.still.2010.03.002

DO - 10.1016/j.still.2010.03.002

M3 - Article

VL - 108

SP - 68

EP - 76

JO - Soil & Tillage Research

JF - Soil & Tillage Research

SN - 0167-1987

IS - 1-2

ER -