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Haileselassie B.,Tigray Agricultural Research Institute | Haileselassie B.,Wageningen University | Stomph T.-J.,Center for Crop Systems Analysis | Hoffland E.,Wageningen University
Soil Science and Plant Nutrition | Year: 2011

Teff (Eragrostis tef (Zucc.) Trotter) is a major food crop in Ethiopia and Eritrea. It is well adapted to Vertisols. Yields are low (around 1000 kg ha -1) despite fertilization with urea and diammonium phosphate. The objectives of this study were to understand farmers' perception on teff production constraints and to evaluate on-farm yield response of teff to zinc (Zn) fertilization. We conducted a farm survey and a participatory fertilization experiment in three teff-based sites (peasant associations) on Vertisols in the mid highland and lowland agroecological zones in Ethiopia. Per site 10 farmers participated in the survey and on-farm experiment. Poor soil fertility in the mid highland and moisture deficit in the lowland agroecological zones were mentioned by farmers as major teff production constraints, respectively. On-farm application of Zn fertilizer at a rate of 8 kg Zn ha -1 increased teff grain and straw yields by 14% and 15% on average, respectively, which could be economically profitable. Not all plots showed a positive response, however, indicating the necessity for enhanced insight in indicators for soil Zn bioavailability as a yield-limiting factor. Our study indicates the importance of Zn in teff production on Vertisols. We propose further research on management options to prepare for effective interventions based on the farm survey and on-farm experiment. © 2011 Japanese Society of Soil Science and Plant Nutrition.

Chernet S.,Tigray Agricultural Research Institute | Belew D.,Jimma University | Abay F.,Mekelle University
International Journal of Agricultural Research | Year: 2013

The aim of the study was to estimate the extent of genetic variability and association among characters. Thirty six tomato genotypes were evaluated at Humera Agricultural Research Center, Northern Ethiopia, during 2010/11 in 6x6 simple lattice design with two replications. Variance component method was used to estimate genetic variance, heritability and genetic advance. Highly significant difference (p<0.01) was observed among the tested genotypes for all the characters studied. Highest phenotypic (79.13 and 74.66) and genotypic coefficient of correlation (78.47 and 73.27) were observed for number of matured fruits per plant and fruit set percentage. The highest heritability estimate was recorded for number of matured fruits per plant (98.34) and the least for number of primary branches (47.36%). Yield per hectare had highest positive and highly significant phenotypic correlation with weight of fruits per plant (rp = 0.89), fruits per plant (rp = 0.85) and fruit set percentage (rp = 0.78). While it showed negative and highly significant phenotypic correlation with days to 50% fruiting (rp = -0.78) and days to maturity (rp = -0.68). The study generally, revealed the presence of adequate variability which can be exploited through direct selection or hybridization. © 2013 Academic Journals Inc.

Gebremedhn H.,Tigray Agricultural Research Institute
Livestock Research for Rural Development | Year: 2016

Becium grandiflorum is one of the major honeybee plants to Ethiopia. Honeybees highly visiting the plant for collecting pollen or/and nectar. Even stem cutting was recommended to propagate the plantas bee fodder with cutting height of 20 cm, its optimum cutting diameter was not yet determined. This affects the regeneration and performance of newly raised seedlings of the plant through cutting. Hence, this study was designed to identify the optimum cutting thickens or diameter of B. grandiflorum for bee forage development. The study was carried out at the farm of Mekelle Agricultural Research Center, Mekelle. The experiment was laid in randomized complete block design (RCBD) with three treatments and three replications. The treatments were cutting thickness of 10mm to13 mm, >13 mm to16 mm and >16 mm to 19 mm. Treatments means were compared using least significant difference (LSD) test at 5% level of probability using Genstat software version 14. Cutting diameter had significant effect on the number of branches and head flower per plant. Cutting diameter of 10 mm to 13 mm had the highest number of branches (22.96) and head flowers (448),while cutting diameter of >16 mm to 19 mm had the smallest number of branches (18.22) and head flowers (369) per plant. Therefore, for the successful propagation of B. grandiflorum, it is recommended to use 10 mm to13 mm stem cuttings diameter. © 2016, Fundacion CIPAV. All right reserved.

Belay T.,Tigray Agricultural Research Institute
Journal of the Professional Association for Cactus Development | Year: 2015

Carmine cochineal, Dactylopius coccus Costa, was introduced to northern Ethiopia to add considerable value to existing cactus pear vegetation that in places like the southern Tigray was becoming an invasive plant. It became an investment opportunity where Foodsafe, a Chilean company was involved. Company was granted 300 ha at the cactus pear infested plains of southern Tigray. Foodsafe was also expected to expand cochineal production through an outgrower scheme. It created employment opportunity for the locals and started exporting dried cochineal to Mexico and Germany bringing in foreign currency. As cactus pear grows in communal lands, conflict of interest arose and it polarised the community. The company was forcibly closed and it was a tragedy that a one time commercial insect became a full-fledged invasive insect pest. Attempts to contain the insect with mechanical and chemical control were not successful. So far more than 16,000 ha of cactus pear land was infested with carmine cochineal. 13,000 ton of dried cochineal could have been harvested in a single year, generated USD $52 million, and part of that money could have been used for its management. © 2015, Professional Association for Cactus Development. All rights reserved.

Tesfay T.,Tigray Agricultural Research Institute | Tesfay Y.,Mekelle University
Tropical Animal Health and Production | Year: 2012

This study investigated the effect of replacing noug (Guizotia abyssinica) (L. f.) Cass. seed cake by dried Leucaena leucocephala (Lam.) de Wit leaves on feed intake, live weight gain, nutrient digestibility, and nitrogen balance of highland sheep in Tigray Region in northern Ethiopia. Twenty intact yearling male highland sheep weighing16. 9 ± 1. 62 kg were used in a randomized complete block design and included the following four treatments: T1 (control, wheat straw ad libitum + 200 g noug seed cake (NSC) + 150 g wheat bran (WB)); T2 (wheat straw ad libitum + 170 g NSC + 44. 3 g dried L. leucocephala (DLL) + 150 g WB); T3 (wheat straw ad libitum + 140 g NSC + 87. 3 g DLL + 150 g WB); and T4 (wheat straw ad libitum + 110 g NSC + 130. 2 g DLL + 150 g WB). Sheep fed on T4 diet consumed higher total dry matter (658 g/head/day) and recorded the highest average daily weight gain (59 g/head/day). Sheep fed on T4 diet had higher dry matter (61 %), organic matter (63 %), and crude protein (75 %) digestibility values than the other treatments. Sheep fed on T3 diet demonstrated higher feed conversion ratio (11. 93) than sheep kept on the other treatments. All sheep exhibited positive nitrogen balance, with the highest nitrogen retention being measured in T4 (12 g/head/day). It is concluded that partially replacing NSC by DLL can improve total dry matter intake, digestibility of nutrients, and body weight gain in highland sheep fed on wheat straw as the basal diet. © 2012 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

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