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Integration of Forage and Food Crops Grown Sequentially on Vertisols under Rainfed Conditions in the Mid-Altitude Ethiopian Highlands

  • Abate Tedla (a1), J. Sherington (a1) and M. A. Mohamed-Saleem (a1)

Summary

Poor drainage of Vertisols in the Ethiopian mid-altitude highlands limits farming operations and cropping in the early rainy season (July–August). Traditional crops are grown on residual moisture late in the season (September–January) when waterlogging is less of a problem. Productivity is therefore below its potential. The recent introduction of a broadbed and furrow system for improved drainage on Vertisols allows full use of the growing period and provides scope for a wider variety of cropping systems and increased productivity. Trials using a sequential cropping system demonstrated that two crops a year can be grown when Vertisols are drained. The crops used in the trial were oats or an oat/vetch mixture forage in the early season followed by grasspea or chickpea food crops in the late season as the second crop. Further on-farm research on sequential cropping of forages and food crops in the mid-altitude highlands of Ethiopia is now needed.

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References

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