Effect of Planting Pattern and Irrigation Frequency on Forage Yield and Chemical Composition of Lablab (Lablab Purpureus (L.) Sweet) in Combination with Maize (Zea mays L.)
A study was conducted at Kadawa Experimental Research Station of the Institute for Agricultural Research Kano during the 2010/2011 dry season to determine forage yield of lablab, nutritive quality of lablab forage and maize grain yield using five (5) different planting patterns and three (3) irrigation frequencies. A 5 x 3 factorial experiment in a complete randomized block design with a split plot arrangement was used. The results indicated that there was a positive correlation between weeks after sowing lablab and plant height (R2 = 0.88). Alternate rows showed 35% increase in forage yield (P<0.05) compared to sole maize (control). The 9 days irrigation interval showed 10% increase (P<0.05) in forage yield compared to 3 and 6 days intervals. However, sole maize produced 39% higher (P<0.05) grain yield compared to intercrops. Irrigation interval at 6 days produced 13% higher (P<0.05) maize grain yield compared to 3 and 9 days intervals. The highest (P<0.05) crude protein (CP) content of 21% was observed in sole lablab treatment. Intercropped lablab had the lowest (P<0.05) crude fibre (CF) compared with the control. It was therefore recommended that smallholder farmers in igeria could introduce lablab as a relay crop with irrigated maize for improved livestock performance, income generation and environmental control.
Key words: Forage, irrigation, lablab, maize, Nigeria
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