Screening of some cultivated hybrids of maize (Zea mays L.) for productivity in the Jos-Plateau environment
AbstractTwo experiments were carried out at the Research Farm of the National Root Crops Research Institute, Kuru near Jos, during the 2007 and 2008 planting seasons, to study the productivity of seven (7) hybrid varieties of maize (Zea maysL.), namely SUWAN-1-Y, ‘Kenya Kitali’, ACR-9776-2, TZMSR-W, DMESR-Y, ACROSS-98 and TZPBSR-W. The experiments were laid out in a randomized complete block design (RCBD) with three replications. The results show that the germination rate was similar across the varieties in 2007; it was higher in the variety ACR-9776-2 (91.67%) than in the variety DMESR-Y (79.58%) in 2008. The highest mean number of days to mid-tasselling in 2007 (76.50) and 2008 (81.17) as well as the mid-silking in 2007(88.33) and 2008 (95.33) were observed in the variety
‘Kenya Kitali’. Similarly, the highest mean plant height in 2007 (2.07m) and 2008 (2.07 m) as well as the mean earwidth in 2007 (16.96 cm) were observed in the variety ‘Kenya Kitali’. The variety also had the highest one-thousand seed weight in 2007 (377.90 g) and 2008 (456.71 g). The variety ACR-9776-2 out-yielded the other varieties in the mean number of kernels per row in 2007 (21.79) and 2008 (29.60). The variety also had the highest shelling percentage in 2007 (88.77%) and 2008 (78.45%). The highest mean number of rows per ear was observed in the variety DMESR-Y in 2007 (15.97) and in the pooled data (14.47). In both years the varieties did not differ significantly in the mean ear-weight, although this was generally higher in 2007 than in 2008. The grain yield per plant was highest in the variety ACROSS-98 (139.93 g plant-1) in 2007 but in 2008 it was similar across the varieties. Total grain yield in 2007 was significantly higher in the variety ACROSS-98 (4.37 t ha -1) than in the other varieties. Grain yield was similar across the varieties in 2008 and in the pooled results. Generally, grain yield and its components were higher in 2007 than in 2008. The study shows that growth, grain yield and yield components of maize vary with variety and environment and that the varieties ACROSS-98, ACR-9776-2, TZMSR-W and ‘Kenya Kitali’ have potentials for high productivity in the Jos-Plateau environment.