Intercrop performance of maize, sorghum and soybean in response to planting pattern
Mixed cropping of cereals and legumes dominate the cropping systems of most farmers in the northern Guinea Savanna agroecological zone of Ghana. The objective of the study was to determine the appropriate crop mixture ratios for higher productivity of maize/soybean and sorghum/soybean cropping systems. The experiment was conducted during the 1997 and 1998 cropping seasons at the Research Farm of the Faculty of Agriculture, University for Development Studies, Tamale, Ghana. Results showed that seed yields of the monocropping maize, sorghum and soybean were higher than the intercropping yields of maize/soybean and sorghum/soybean. The sorghum/soybean intercropping gave a mean Land Equivalent Ratio (LER) of 0.88 and 0.93 in 1997 and 1998 respectively while the maize/soybean intercropping gave mean LER of 0.82 and 0.81 in 1997 and 1998, respectively. There was lesser interspecific competition between the sorghum/soybean while greater interspecific competition between maize/soybean intercropping was observed. The sorghum/soybean intercropping gave a mean Relative Crowding Coefficient (RCC) of 1.57 and 1.23 in 1997 and 1998 respectively which was more productive than the maize/soybean intercropping with mean RCC of 1.01 and 0.88 in 1997 and 1998, respectively. Based on the LERs and RCCs analyses, three rows of sorghum or maize alternating with three rows of soybean seem more productive.
JOURNAL OF THE GHANA SCIENCE ASSOCIATION Volume 2 No. 2 (2000) pp. 31-35