Adieleet Al

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Adiele et al



Greener
Journal of  Agricultural Sciences


Vol. 4 (2), pp.
058-066,
March 2014.


 ISSN: 2276-7770  



Research

Paper

Manuscript Number: 1205131015

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15580/GJAS.2014.2.1205131015 



Management of Short Fallows Using Two Different Cover
Crops

 



Joy G. Adiele*, Lawrence I. Chukwu, Anthony O. Ano and
ThankGod N. Echendu

 


National Root Crops Research Institute, Umudike. KM 8
Ikot Ekpene Road, PMB 7006 Umuahia Abia Nigeria.

 


*Corresponding Author’s Email: joyadiele @ yahoo. com,
Phone: 234 (0) 803 868 0437

Abstract:

In
Nigeria significant efforts are being made to improve and
conserve the soil. In the time past the soil resource base
was sustained through long fallows of 10-15 years. Due to
population pressure and other conflicting interests on land,
fallow period is now between 6 and 12 months. This natural
fallow has proved ineffective for the sustenance of soil
productivity. The present study compared the soil
productivity improvement attribute of three fallow
management systems – two leguminous cover crops (Mucuna
pruriens
var. utilis and Pueraria phaseoloides)
seeded on June 2012 and natural fallow dominated by guinea
grass (Panicum maximum).
Mucuna

treatments significantly provided soil cover until six
months, while Pueraria provided soil cover for 12
months and reduced weeds compared with Mucuna and the
control. However, there were no significant differences in
soil physicochemical properties before and after round the
year fallow. Therefore, both cover crops could be sown to
replace the natural fallow. Mucuna fallow appears to
be an effective system for 6 months
fallow while Pueraria could provide cover and
effectively suppress weeds for 12 months.


 


Keywords:


Root and tuber crops; Legumes; Soil; Short fallow;
Conservation.

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