Weeding method and pre-sowing tillage effects on weed growth and pearl millet yield in a sandy soil of the West African Sahelian zone

Klaij, M C and Hoogmoed , W B (1996) Weeding method and pre-sowing tillage effects on weed growth and pearl millet yield in a sandy soil of the West African Sahelian zone. Soil and Tillage Research, 39 (1-2). pp. 31-43. ISSN 0167-1987

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Weed control for the West African Sahel rainfed crops is carried out mainly manually, resulting in high labour requirements. Because of the seasonality of rainfed farming, weed control is often late and incomplete, resulting in considerable losses in crop yield. The case of weed control in continuously-cultivated pearl millet (Pennisetum glaucum) on a sandy soil was examined in studies conducted in Niger. During 3 years, the effects of pre-sowing ridging and combinations of hand and mechanical weeding powered by donkeys on seasonal weed growth (separating within-row and between-row weeds), pearl millet yield, and labour requirements for weeding, were evaluated. Four weeding methods resulted in levels of weed control decreasing in the order: full field hand weeding (Wf); between-row weeding by animal traction + additional within-row hand weeding (Wa+h); between-row weeding by animal traction (Wa); and no weeding (W0). Weeding method was the single most important factor that affected weed growth and, hence crop, yields. Depending on the year, average weed dry matter at harvest ranged from 140 to 270 kg/ha for method Wf to 3000 to 3520 kg/ha for method W0. Correspondingly, the highest millet yields (which ranged from 279 to 1012 kg/ha) were obtained with Wf, with a total weeding labour requirement of 70.1 h/ha. The Wa+h method required 51.8 h/ha and resulted in yields, depending on the year, that were 78-100% of the Wf method. The Wa method resulted in unchecked within-row weed growth that exceeded that in weedy control plots, and reduced crop yield to 28-34% of Wf. Uncontrolled weeds reduced yield to 2-10% of Wf. Pre-sowing tillage reduced seasonal weed growth, increased crop yields, and was particularly effective in reducing the amount of crop weeds for the Wa weed control method. The continuous growing of millet did not change the amount of seasonal weed dry matter during the experiment

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Tillage; Mechanical and manual weed control; Pearl millet yield losses; Within-row and betweenrow weed growth; Altisol; Semi-arid tropics
Subjects: Mandate crops > Millets
Depositing User: Ms K Syamalamba
Date Deposited: 16 Dec 2011 03:28
Last Modified: 14 Sep 2013 12:14
URI: http://oar.icrisat.org/id/eprint/4985
Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0167-1987(96)01049-5
Acknowledgement: UNSPECIFIED
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