Cassava Weed Management Data – Agronomy Trials 2015

The ‘Sustainable Weed Management Technologies for Nigeria’ was a 5-year project that was developed and assessed with smallholder farmer participation modern, relevant and appropriate cassava weed management technologies suitable for sustainable intensification in major agro-ecological (humid rainforest, forest transition savanna and southern Guinea savanna) and socio-economic conditions of Nigeria. An important goal of the project was to help smallholder cassava growers achieve sustainable increases in their productivity and incomes through the development and adoption of improved weed control methods. The project evaluated enhanced cassava agronomy, including judicious, safe use of herbicides, toward improved weed management, across 4 states in Nigeria where cassava is central to food security and livelihoods of 4.5 million farm families.

Though Nigeria is still the global leader in the overall production of cassava with about 50 million tons on 3.8 million hectares, average yields in Nigeria are only about half of those in leading countries in Asia, and less than half of those typical from researcher-run trials in Nigeria. Diverse factors are responsible for low productivity on about 4.5 million cassava farms, but poor weed management is generally among the principal factors. Weed control in the humid tropics is always a challenge, but compared to most other field crops, weed control in cassava systems is much more demanding. The crop is in the field for a long time (12 to 18 months), and is sown at wide spacing, resulting in ample opportunity for weeds to occupy space under the cassava canopy and reduce productivity. Although weeds are one of the most important constraints to improving cassava productivity; for high yields, good weed control needs to be coupled with improved varieties sown in the right densities at the right time. Adequate plant nutrition and pest control are also important; however, such inputs will not result in better yields if weeds are not controlled.

Hand weeding is the predominant weed control practice on smallholder cassava farms. Conventionally, farmers weed cassava three times, but in cassava farms where perennial weeds, such as Imperata, are predominant, extra hoe weeding may be required. Weeding takes 50 to 80% of the total labor budget. Up to 200-500 hours of labor for mostly women and children per ha are needed to prevent economic cassava root losses in Nigeria. IITA and its partners are therefore, through this project conducted research that developed innovative weed management practices, combining improved varieties, proper planting dates, plant populations, and plant nutrition, all coupled to intercropping and tillage options, through well-focused trials in the three agro-ecologies where cassava dominates in Nigeria. Herbicides, meeting globally accepted conventions and safety thresholds appropriate for smallholders, were tested for efficacy and economic merit. Multi-location on-station/off-station trials were followed with participatory farmer evaluations. Extension manuals and other tools for farmer and applicator learning were developed.

Results from this project showed that with appropriate weed management couple with best cassava agronomy cassava growers in can more than double the national yield average in Nigeria.

Land Husbandry, Water Harvesting and Hillside Irrigation Project Impact Evaluation 2012-2016

Agriculture is a major engine of the Rwandan economy and remains a priority sector in the Government of Rwanda’s goals of reducing poverty and achieving food security through commercialized agriculture. Sustainable improvements to agricultural productivity is the only way to achieve this target, calling for investments in participatory land management, water harvesting and intensified irrigation of the hillsides. The Land Husbandry, Water Harvesting and Hillside Irrigation (LWH) project has been working to meet these goals.

Evaluating the overall impact of LWH is important to allow Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources (MINAGRIs) to effectively plan for its future activities. LWH covers a relatively small area of 30,250 ha, eventually affecting approximately 20 watersheds. From the perspective of MINAGRI, LWH can be seen as a pilot program for comprehensive agricultural overhaul. LWH includes major infrastructure investments such as hillside terracing, irrigation dams, and post-harvest storage. The project aims to operationalize MINAGRIs strategy to encourage mono cropping of cash crops, as opposed to the traditional system of inter-cropping for household consumption.

LWH has been rolled out in three phases: implementation in the four Phase 1A sites began in 2010, in the three Phase 1B sites in 2012, and in the Phase 1C sites in late 2013.

There have been five surveys for this project including baselines and four follow-ups. There were two sample groups: 1B and 1C. For the 1B sample group, the baseline was conducted in 2012, and follow-up surveys in 2013, 2014, and 2016. For the 1C sample, the baseline was implemented in 2014, and a follow-up in 2016.

The data files documented here are from the baseline, the first follow-up, and the second follow-up surveys.

The datasets from the third and the fourth follow-up surveys are also published in the Microdata Library with the following study IDs:
1) The third follow-up: RWA_2014_LWHIE-F3_v01_M
2) The fourth follow-up: RWA_2016_LWHIE-F4_v01_M

Land Husbandry, Water Harvesting and Hillside Irrigation Project Impact Evaluation 2016

Agriculture is a major engine of the Rwandan economy and remains a priority sector in the Government of Rwanda’s goals of reducing poverty and achieving food security through commercialized agriculture. Sustainable improvements to agricultural productivity is the only way to achieve this target, calling for investments in participatory land management, water harvesting and intensified irrigation of the hillsides. The Land Husbandry, Water Harvesting and Hillside Irrigation (LWH) project has been working to meet these goals.

Evaluating the overall impact of LWH is important to allow Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources (MINAGRIs) to effectively plan for its future activities. LWH covers a relatively small area of 30,250 ha, eventually affecting approximately 20 watersheds. From the perspective of MINAGRI, LWH can be seen as a pilot program for comprehensive agricultural overhaul. LWH includes major infrastructure investments such as hillside terracing, irrigation dams, and post-harvest storage. The project aims to operationalize MINAGRIs strategy to encourage mono cropping of cash crops, as opposed to the traditional system of inter-cropping for household consumption.

LWH has been rolled out in three phases: implementation in the four Phase 1A sites began in 2010, in the three Phase 1B sites in 2012, and in the Phase 1C sites in late 2013.

There have been five surveys for this project including baselines and four follow-ups. There were two sample groups: 1B and 1C. For the 1B sample group, the baseline was conducted in 2012, and follow-up surveys in 2013, 2014, and 2016. For the 1C sample, the baseline was implemented in 2014, and a follow-up in 2016.

The data file documented here is from the fourth follow-up survey.

The datasets from the baseline, the first, the second, and the third follow-up surveys are also published in the Microdata Library with the following study IDs:
1) The baseline, the first and the second follow-up surveys: RWA_2012-2016_LWHIE-BL-F2_v01_M
2) The third follow-up survey: RWA_2014_LWHIE-F3_v01_M

Sustainable Intensification of Agricultural Productivity in Semi-Arid-Tropics (SAT) of India – Case studies

Sustainable intensification is a term now much used in discussions around the future of agriculture and food security. Semi-arid tropics have largely remained outside the process of excessive intensification, due to the paucity of water. Rather agricultural intensification was restricted to the smaller fractions of irrigated areas in the vast areas of semi-arid tropics. The present study analyses the sustainability using three different approaches. One, Geospatial analysis, second crop simulation modelling and third an econometric analysis. In Geospatial analysis both spatial and temporal changes in per unit cropped area are captured with more precision and accuracy. Crop simulation models are valuable tools in assessing sustainability of cropping systems. The major components of the model are vegetative and reproductive development, carbon balance, water balance and nitrogen balance. It simulates crop growth and development using a daily time step from sowing to maturity and ultimately predicts yield. In the present study we evaluated eight sustainability indicators, crop yield, water-use efficiency (WUE), the amounts of soil organic carbon (OC) across cycles of the rotation, nitrogen fixing, ‘N’ leaching, Nitrogen-use-efficiency, inorganic ‘N’ in soil at maturity, total ‘N’ uptake at maturity. Sustainability polygons were developed to illustrate the sustainability state of a crop rotations to traditional rotations. To measure sustainability, household survey data collected from designated studies was used to derive indicators of sustainability. A range of sustainability indicators were generated from the survey relating to ecological, economic and social dimensions. The main purpose of this study was to elicit changes across the farming systems and agro-ecological regions and derive conclusions for sustainability across study locations

Karnataka Household Surveys for Agricultural Biodiversity Assessment: Dataset

To identify and quantify the number of all plant and animal species (domesticated and wild) at the household-level that are: (a) grown on farm and home garden, or collected from the wild; (b) consumed as part of the diet; and (c) purchased and sold in the study sites. Information was collected for each species on its place of production or collection (farm, home garden, collected in the wild, etc.), the objective for its production or collection (Self-consumption, sale in the market, both), its different uses (food, medicine, animal feed, building material, processing, etc.), seasonality, the number of types, varieties and breeds recognized and used, key characteristics of its seed system (sources of seed, transactions and social relationships), and the water regime associated with its production (rainfed, irrigated, water harvest, etc.). Also data on assets and other socioeconomic indicators were collected. A household survey was carried out with a representative random sample of aproximately 67 households per village in three villages in the district of Bijapur District: Mannur, Nandyal, Balaganur. The total sample size is 200 households. Three villages in the Bijapur District: Mannur, Nandyal, Balaganur were surveyed

Ghana Focus Group Discussions Data: Dataset

A series of focus group discussions (FGDs) to elicit the local knowledge about the agricultural and wild biodiversity present in the study areas in order to generate: (a) an inventory (list) of all useful plant, and animal species used by local communities for human food, animal feed, medicine, fuel, housing, farming tools, etc. and their local names; (b) an inventory of all foods consumed; (c) an inventory of species and products bought and sold in markets that people in the village attend. Two FGDs per village in three villages. FGDs were held separately for men and women in order to collect gender disaggregated data. Geographic area includes: Three villages in the Lawra District of Ghana: Bonpari (Lat 10.67, Lon W002.81); Gbelinkaa (Lat N10.58, Lon W002.83); Yagtuur (Lat N10.55, Lon W 002.86) In each of the three villages, two focus group discussions were held separately. One with men and the other with women. Each group will deal with the three aspects for discussion: Useful biological diversity in the production system; Market diversity; and Dietary diversity. There were between 10-16 participants in each group. Each group tried to include a cross-section of individuals involved in agricultural production or at least collecting useful plants from common lands and the wild, representing different levels of access to land (land owners, local land renters and migrant land renters), different ethnic groups present in the village and different age groups (special emphasis should be placed to include younger farmers). For each group there were two facilitators, one to guide the exercise and the other to document the process (take notes, photographs, etc.). The data were elicited using the four-square methodology explained in the Protocol document

Niger Focus Group Discussion Data: Dataset

A series of focus group discussions (FGDs) to elicit the local knowledge about the agricultural and wild biodiversity present in the study areas in order to generate: (a) an inventory (list) of all useful plant, and animal species used by local communities for human food, animal feed, medicine, fuel, housing, farming tools, etc. and their local names; (b) an inventory of all foods consumed; (c) an inventory of species and products bought and sold in markets that people in the village attend. Two FGDs per village in three villages. FGDs were held separately for men and women in order to collect gender disaggregated data. In each of the three villages, two focus group discussions were held separately. One with men and the other with women. Each group will deal with the three aspects for discussion: Useful biological diversity in the production system; Market diversity; and Dietary diversity. There were between 10-16 participants in each group. Each group tried to include a cross-section of individuals involved in agricultural production or at least collecting useful plants from common lands and the wild, representing different levels of access to land (land owners, local land renters and migrant land renters), different ethnic groups present in the village and different age groups (special emphasis should be placed to include younger farmers). For each group there were two facilitators, one to guide the exercise and the other to document the process (take notes, photographs, etc.). The data were elicited using the four-cell analysis methodology explained in the Protocol document

Mali Focus Group Discussions Data: Dataset

A series of focus group discussions (FGDs) to elicit the local knowledge about the agricultural and wild biodiversity present in the study areas in order to generate: (a) an inventory (list) of all useful plant, and animal species used by local communities for human food, animal feed, medicine, fuel, housing, farming tools, etc. and their local names; (b) an inventory of all foods consumed; (c) an inventory of species and products bought and sold in markets that people in the village attend. Two FGDs per village in three villages. FGDs were held separately for men and women in order to collect gender disaggregated data In each of the three villages, two focus group discussions were held separately. One with men and the other with women. Each group will deal with the three aspects for discussion: Useful biological diversity in the production system; Market diversity; and Dietary diversity. There were between 10-16 participants in each group. Each group tried to include a cross-section of individuals involved in agricultural production or at least collecting useful plants from common lands and the wild, representing different levels of access to land (land owners, local land renters and migrant land renters), different ethnic groups present in the village and different age groups (special emphasis should be placed to include younger farmers). For each group there were two facilitators, one to guide the exercise and the other to document the process (take notes, photographs, etc.). The data were elicited using the four-square methodology explained in the Protocol document. The three villages survey were in the Sikasso District of Mali: Fakoro (Lat 12°13074, Lon 005°20156); Kani (Lat 12°15011, Lon 005°10827); N’goutjina (Lat 12°17961, Lon 005°28372)

Monitoring of Market Prices, Characterization of Value Chains, Cost and Benefit Analysis, and Adoption Evalutaion

This research aims (1) monitor the market prices on quarterly basis in Bougouni and Koutiala, (2) make a comparative analysis of on-farm trials conducted in intervention zones of the project, (3) value chain analysis of main crops, and (4) make an adoption evaluation of technologies promoted by the project in Bougouni and Koutiala districts.

About the project

Project title: Research Program on Soil & Water Management

Project abstract


As part of the Feed the Future Initiative, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is supporting an innovative multi-stakeholder agricultural research program, the Africa Research in Sustainable Intensification for the Next Generation (Africa RISING). The program’s main objective is to identify and validate scalable options for the sustainable intensification of key African cereal-based farming systems to increase food production and improve the livelihoods of smallholder farmers and at the same time conserve or improve the natural resource base.

Project website: http://africa-rising.net

Project start date: 2011-01-01

Project end date : 2016-12-31

Protocol for the Agricultural Biodiversity (ABD) Assessment in Mali / Protocole pour l’évaluation de la Biodiversité Agricole (ABD) á Mali

The biodiversity of plant and animal species both domesticated and wild used for food by humans (referred to here as agricultural biodiversity—ABD) is one of the most important assets for rural households, particularly for the poor in marginal areas such as the drylands of the developing world. A contribution of Bioversity International to the Dryland Systems CGIAR Research Programme (CRP) [http://drylandsystems.cgiar.org/] has been to examine systematically the diversity of these species in CRP target sites in Mali, Ghana, Malawi and India. Bioversity and partners have carried out a set of Agricultural Biodiversity Assessments in these countries. In the case of Mali, the selected sites include two villages in the Sikasso region: Kani and Farakoro. These villages have been already part of an ICRISAT baseline survey. An additional village, N’Goutjina, was selected by Bioversity to complement the work. Here we present the protocols used for collecting the data from Mali.
The objective of the ABD Assessment is to identify and quantify all the useful plant, animal, and aquatic species utilized by rural households and communities in the Dryland Systems CRP sites, as well as information on markets attended and general socioeconomic household characteristics. This information will be used to characterize three dimensions of ABD: (1) diversity in the production system, including on farm and common lands; (2) dietary diversity; and (3) market diversity; in terms of the elements and relationships involved and the exogenous factors that influence their status and dynamics. These data will be the basis for analyzing the roles of ABD in the lives and livelihoods of these rural populations in order to identify entry points for designing and implementing interventions that contribute to improve their well-being.