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Influence of Maize and Cowpea Mixed Sowing on Forage Production and Quality Under Various Tillage Practices

Muhammad Kamran Khan, Shahid Ibni Zamir, Ihtisham Ul Haq, Mazhar Hussain, Sidra Arshad, Neelma Hassan


 Cereal and legume intercropping increase the quality of forage. This experiment was conducted to study the sole cropping of maize (Zea mays) and cowpea (vigna sinesis) as well as their intercropping in three different seed ratios like maize + cowpea (55 + 45%), maize + cowpea (65% + 35%), maize + cowpea (75% + 25%) under two tillage systems ( zero tillage and conventional tillage) and their impact on quality and yield of forage. This study was laid out in randomized complete block design with split plot arrangement having with three replications during spring season 2015 and 2016. Results depicted that intercropping significantly affect the forage yield and quality as compared to sole cropping of maize and cowpea. Tillage system having non-significant effect on forage quality but effect significantly on yield. In all intercropping treatment land equivalent ratio (LER) was recorded high indicating that yield advantages for intercropping as compared to sole cropping. Land equivalent ratio (LER) was observed maximum in maize + cowpea (65% + 35%) followed by maize + cowpea (55% + 45%). Crude protein in case of forge quality was increased by intercropping of legumes. It is the reason that nitrogen availability increases for maize in intercropping than its sole crop. Forage production in intercropping of cowpea concentration with maize causes to increase the crude protein and ash content. It is concluded that quantity and quality of intercropped maize-cowpea is increased and requirement to protein is decreased as compared to sole maize-cowpea

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