PUSH-PULL Demo plots

Introduction

Progress in agricultural productivity is vital to reduce hunger and poverty and ensure food security. Agricultural growth can be succeeded by reducing incidence of the major constraints to productivity such as pests, weeds and degraded soils.

Stem borer and poor soil nutrients are the two main constraints to efficient on production of cereals (maize and sorghum) in whole regions of Somalia. Losses caused by stem borers and soil fertility can be reach as high as 80% in some areas.

To reduce the efficient of these two problems on farming in Somalia, Darusalam Seed Co. getting a good working collaboration with Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (UNFAO) demonstrated as an experimental plots to test the efficient and climate adaptability of PUSH & PULL technology that developed by International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (ICIPE).

 

Objective:

Determining the efficacy of the Push and Pull (P&P) technology that has been modified for the Somali agro-climatic conditions in controlling stem borer in sorghum and maize in South Central regions.

Materials & Methods:

Seeds:

Pull species: Brachiaria sp1:  This species was used, to attract stem borer, instead of Napier grass which is the traditional plant in the P&P technology. The reason is because Napier grass has a higher water demand than the former, and hence may not be successfully grown in arid and semi-arid areas. One of the advantages of Brachiaria grass is that it can grow well in low-fertility acid soils and still be able to produce highly nutritious forage.

Push species: Two different species of fodder legumes were used: Green leaf Desmodium & Silver leaf Desmodium. These two intercropped with the main crops (sorghum or maize). These species were used to repel the borers from the main crop and can also improve the nutritional condition of the soils, as they have the capacity to fix N2 very efficiently. Desmodium (silver leaf).

Plot designs

Maize

Sorghum

Intercrop with Green leaf Desmodium P&P Plot A (var 1 + 2) P&P Plot C (var 1 + 2)
Intercrop with Silver leaf Desmodium P&P Plot B (var 1 + 2) P&P Plot D (var 1 + 2)
Control E (var 1 + 2) F (var 1 + 2)

This experimental plots was successfully done and noted that PUSH-PULL can work and has climate adaptability in Somalia.

Activity photos: