Soil Maize Cultivar-related Challenges on Striga hermonthica Infested Fields in Western Kenya

  •  Celestine Manyasi    
  •  Dennis Ochieno    
  •  Francis Muyekho    
  •  John Muoma    
  •  Mwikali Pamela    
  •  Victoria Naluyange    


Maize production in Western Kenya is constrained by Striga hermonthica and declining soil fertility. Integrated Striga Management (ISM) packages have been proposed. An ISM field experiment assessed combination of 4 maize varieties with 5 levels of soil fertility amendments. Imazapyr Resistant (IR) maize and local yellow seed Shipindi had highest germination percentages of 90% and 81% respectively, compared to commercial white seed Duma and local white seed Rachar. Duma had significantly large plants in terms of leave size and plant height; and taking least time to silking and tasseling while producing heaviest cobs and grains per plant. Synthetic fertilizer (DAP+CAN) was associated with the least germination percentage, but produced the largest plants with many leaves, took the shortest time to silking, and produced highest cob weight and grain weight, with very low S. hermonthica infestations regardless of the maize varieties. Cattle manure (CM) and water hyacinth compost containing cattle manure culture (HCM) and Effective Microbes™ (HEM) had the highest S. hermonthica population per unit area. Maize grown with water hyacinth compost containing Effective Microbes™ (HEM) positively influenced cob weight than those receiving cattle manure (CM) and the controls; while being associated with the highest numerical increase in grain yield/area. Alternative soil fertility interventions based on these observations are therefore proposed.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
  • ISSN(Print): 1927-0461
  • ISSN(Online): 1927-047X
  • Started: 2012
  • Frequency: annual

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