Pre-extension Popularization of Improved Maize Varieties: In Raya-Azebo Woreda South of Tigray, Ethiopia

Hagos Kidane, Haddis Yirga, Ykaalo Teklay, Zebrhe Teklay, Jemal Juhar


Popularization of improved maize varieties were conducted in Raya-Azebo woreda of South Tigray during 2012 and 2013 main cropping season with the objectives of popularizing best performing varieties to the agro-ecology of the woreda. The varieties used were Melkassa-2 and Melkassa-4. In 2012, the demonstration was made on 30 beneficiary farmers with plot size ranged from 0.125 to 0.25 hectare and covered a total of 7.5 hectares of land was planted with Melkassa-2 and Melkassa-4 varieties. The results indicated that both varieties were performed better than local cultivar. The average grain yield was 33.63 and 30 quintal per hectare for Melkassa-2 and Melkassa-4 respectively whereas the local cultivar gives about 16 quintal per hectare. The beneficiaries selected Melkassa-2 for its higher yield and longer stalks for feed. In the second year, participating farmers were increased by four folds. The farmers planted Melkassa-2 variety on wider area and supplemented by irrigation to fill the rain fall gaps in between the critical growth stages. As a result the productivity of Melkasa-2 was increased significantly and obtained a yield of 57.73 quintal per hectare. Therefore, it is better to scale out the varieties to wider areas of same agro-ecologies under supplementary irrigation.

Keywords: pre-extension popularization, Scaling out, varieties

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