Tropicultura (2012-01-01)

Performance technico-économique des associations maïs/niébé et maïs/mucuna en situation réelle de culture au Burkina Faso: potentiels et contraintes

  • Coulibaly, K.,
  • Vall, E.,
  • Autfray, P.,
  • Sedogo, PM.

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 30, no. 3
pp. 147 – 154


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Technical and Economic Performance of Maize/Cowpea and Maize/Mucuna Associations in the Real Situation of Cultivation in Burkina Faso: Potentials and Constraints. Western Burkina Faso, population pressure has led to the abandonment of fallow. Continuous cropping of cotton and maize are recognized to severely reduce soil fertility. In order to increase the productivity of cropping systems and contribute to the recovery of soil fertility, farmers of Tuy involved in the "Fertipartenaires" project decided to test different maize and legume intercropping patterns. The objective of the study was to develop experimentation in farmers' conditions concerning maize/legume intercrops which should be economically efficient and technically acceptable. Volunteer producers have tested the maize/cowpea (13 producers) and the maize/mucuna (10 producers). Cowpea was already produced by farmers as a cash or food-crop at a small-scale in pure stands for grain products and mucuna was newly introduced as a fodder crop for cattle.The maize-legume intercropping was a new practice in the region. For each experimental plot, the intercropping was compared with the sole cultivation of corn (control). The sets of production practices (SPP) were monitored until the measure of the yield. For both intercrops, homogeneous SPP were defined by principal component analysis (PCA) and hierarchical ascending classification (HAC) and the most efficient ones, technically and economically, were compared with monoculture of maize by variance analysis (ANOVA). It emerged that the dates of tillage and sowing, plant density, date of weeding, and soil fertility levels are the performance factors for maize/ legume intercrops. Maize/legume intercropping lead significantly (P< 10%) to an increase of biomass from 22 to 29% compared to monoculture of maize without increasing the work duration. The maize/cowpea intercrop provided higher income than the maize/ mucuna one. Studies should continue to improve the sets of production practices, to estimate work drudgery induced by intercropping during harvesting and the medium terms effect of legumes on soil fertility enhancement.