Yield Response of Intercropped Maize (Zea mays L.) and Okra (Abelmoschus esculentus L. Moench) to Seasonal Conditions at Makurdi, Nigeria

Michael Ojore Ijoyah, Teryima Iorlamen, Joseph Adakole Idoko


Field experiments were conducted during the wet seasons (May-August) in years 2008 and 2009 and dry seasons (November-February) 2008/2009 and 2009/2010, at the Research Farm, University of Agriculture, Makurdi, Nigeria, to evaluate the yield response of maize and okra mixture to seasonal conditions. The two seasons (wet and dry) affecting the three cropping systems (sole maize, sole okra and the intercrop of okra and maize) constituted the treatments, which were laid out in a randomized complete block design with four replications. Results of study showed that in the wet season, intercropping with maize significantly (P=0.05) depressed okra yield by 25.0 % and 31.0 % respectively, in 2008 and 2009, while in the dry season, yield of intercropped okra was significantly (P=0.05) depressed by 40.6 % and 43.0 % respectively, in 2008/2009 and 2009/2010, compared to that obtained from monocropped okra. Irrespective of season, intercropping did not significantly (P=0.05) affect maize yield but maize yield obtained when planted as sole and in mixture with okra was greater for the wet season compared to that obtained under dry season condition. In addition, total intercrop yield was greater in the wet season than in the dry season. Intercropping okra and maize gave greater land equivalent ratio (LER) values of 1.53 and 1.47, respectively in the wet seasons of years 2008 and 2009, than that recorded for the dry seasons of 2008/2009 and 2009/2010, thus, indicating that greater productivity per unit area was achieved by growing the two crops together than by growing them separately in the wet season compared to that under dry season condition. With these LER values, greater percentage of land were saved intercropping maize and okra in the wet season, compared to that obtained under dry season condition.

Keywords: Cropping system, seasonal conditions, maize, okra

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ISSN (Paper)2224-3186 ISSN (Online)2225-0921

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