A spatial database of lowland cropping systems in Benin, Mali and Sierra Leone
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This paper presents data collected in 2013, 2014 and 2015 on the cultural practices and agronomic performance of cropping systems in 500 lowland rice fields located in five regions of three West African countries, Benin, Mali and Sierra Leone. Data were collected in two stages. In the first stage, the main regions containing inland valleys were identified in each of the three countries and the most cultivated inland valley in each region was selected. Weather data were obtained from weather stations located close to the selected inland valleys. In regions with no weather stations, Tinytag data loggers were installed in the inland valleys to collect data on temperature, rainfall and relative humidity. In the second stage, the location and size of all the farmers' fields in each inland valley were determined using GPS devices. In 2013, soil samples were collected in each farmer's field and the soil physical-chemical properties were determined. Agronomic and socio-economic surveys were conducted to collect data on cultivated crops, crop sequences and management techniques using questionnaires and informal interviews. Crop yields were determined in each farmer's field in the growing season. The database contains a total of 131 variables divided into 9 themes: field characteristics, land preparation, field maintenance, irrigation, residue management, soil data, weather data, crop productions in the dry season and crop production in the rainy season. (C) 2019 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Inc.
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