Impact of climate on the yield of major tuber crops in Kwara State, Nigeria
Rain fall, maximum temperature, minimum temperature, evaporation, relative humidity, sunshine hours, soil temperature data were obtained from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) for a decade (2002 – 2011), while crop yield data for the same period were sourced from Kwara State Agricultural and Development Project (KWADP). Both climatic and crop yield data were analysed using correlation analytical techniques, multiple regression and trend analysis in order to evaluate the impact of climate on the yield of the major tuber crops in Kwara State, Nigeria viz: cassava, yam, and sweet potato. The result obtained shows that the impact of climate on yield is significant (p<0.05) for yam and cassava, however, insignificant (p<0.05) for sweet potato. The implication of this is that climate has a strong linear correlation with yam and cassava within the years under review. Tuber crops yield in the study area can be improved upon by supplementing rain-fed cultivation with irrigation and application of modern agricultural techniques and operations by the farmers.
Keywords: Agriculture, climate, tuber-crops, yield, decade, Nigeria