Fertilizer Recommendations for Maize Production in the South Sudan and Sudano-Guinean Zones of Benin uri icon

abstract

  • The present study aims to determine fertilizer (N-P-K) recommendations for maize (Zea mays L.) on Acrisols (south Benin) and Ferric and Plintic Luvisols (centre Benin). Two years (2011 and 2012) experiment was conducted at Dogbo and Allada districts (southern) and Dassa (centre Benin). Six on-farm experiments were carried out to validate fertilizer rates simulated by the DSSAT model. The experimental design in each field was a completely randomized bloc with four replications and ten N-P-K rates: 0-0-0 (control), 44-15-17.5 (standard fertilizer recommendation for maize), 80-30-40, 80-15-40, 80-30-25, 80-30-0, 69-30-40, 92-30-40, 69-15-25 and 46-15-25 kg ha(-1). Treatments 44-15-17.5 and 46-15-25 showed the lowest grain and stover yields. The observed maize grain yields were highly correlated with the estimated grain yields (R-2 values varied between 80 and 91% for growing season 2011 and between 68 and 94% for growing season of 2012). The NRSME values varied between 12.54 and 22.56% (for growing season of 2011) and between 13.09 and 24.13% (for growing season of 2012). The economic analysis for the past 32 years (1980-2012) including the current experiment showed that N-P-K rates 80-30-25 (at Dogbo), 80-15-40 (at Allada) and 80-30-0 (at Dassa) were the best fertilizer recommendations as they presented the highest grain yields and the best return to investment per hectare. Nevertheless, 80-30-25 is advised for Dassa considering that sustainable maize production will require regular inputs of potassium. The 2 years of field experiments were not sufficient to derive biophysically optimal fertilizer recommendation rates for each site.

publication date

  • 2018
  • 2018