Critical analysis of tillage practices with fertility levels in maize and populations in beans as adaptation measures to climate change to enhance food security at Kabete uri icon


  • Trials were carried out in 2012/2013 short and 2013 long seasons at Kabete site representing a warmand wet environment in Kenya to determine, the appropriateness of combining fertilizer levels formaize and population levels with tied ridges for beans, as adaptation measures under changingclimate. The maize experiment consisted of three fertilizer levels of 0, 20 and 40 kg/ha N while thebean experiment had three spacings of 12, 15 and 20 cm in a split plot design. The experiments werereplicated thrice and consisted of conventional tillage and tied ridges as main plots representing thetwo soil water management practices while the three soil fertility levels (in maize N0, N20 and N40) orspacing options (12, 15 and 20cm) were sub plots in a Completely Randomized Block Design. Theridges were tied at intervals of 1 m and spaced at recommended crop spacings (i.e. 75cm for maize and45cm for beans) and the crop planted on the slope of the ridge in 6 by 5 m plots. Basal phosphate (P205)fertilizer in the form of Triple Superphosphate was applied at planting time at the rate of 40kg/ha.Nitrogen in the form of Calcium Ammonium Nitrate was applied at 20 Kg/ha in the 20 and 40 Ntreatments at planting and further 20kg/ha N top dressed in the 40 treatment level. Harvesting wasdone at physiological maturity of grain which was air dried. Statistical analysis was done of thetreatments and comparisons done of the adaptation advantages of the treatments. Tied ridgingincreased maize yields at the medium fertilizer level of 20 (+5.22%) but were negative under both zero(-15.56%) and 40 kg/ha application of fertilizers (-5.42%). In the short season, increased bean spacingfrom 12 to 20 decreased yields under normal (-13.6%) and tied ridges (-37.3%) but remained higher atpopulations of 12 and 15. In the long season increasing bean population from spacing of 12 cm to 20 hadno advantage and under tied ridging compared to normal tillage. Tied ridging as a climate changeadaptive measure should not be instituted as a blanket recommendation across rainfall regimes, crops,fertilization levels or plant populations and is more advantageous in drier seasons

publication date

  • 2013