Paper Details



Muhammad Aamir Iqbal, Brandon J. Bethune, Asif Iqbal, Rana Nadeem Abbas, Zubair Aslam, Haroon Zaman Khan and Bilal Ahmad

Forage sorghum is a climate smart crop having drought, heat and salinity tolerance but its forage yield is not sufficient to meet forage requirement during summer months. Sorghum-soybean intercropping is a way to increase productivity but reduction in the yield of component crops owing to severe competition continues to remains a biggest challenge. A multi-year field trial was executed to assess the productivity of sorghum-soybean intercropping systems sown at varied times (sorghum and soybean sown simultaneously, sorghum sown 18 days prior to soybean and vice versa) and spatial arrangements (sorghum-soybean sown in 4:1, 4:4, 2:1 and 2:2 row proportions). Factorial arrangement of randomized complete block design was used to conduct the field trials with four replicates. Agronomic variables of forage sorghum (plant height, stem diameter, number of leaves, plant leaf area, fresh and dry weights per plant) were positively affected when it was sown 18 days earlier to soybean in 2:1 row proportion. The same intercropping system gave significantly (p<0.01) higher green forage yield, dry biomass of sorghum along with mixed (sorghum+ soybean) green forage yield and dry biomass yield. However, soybean green and dry biomass yields remained unmatched when it was sown 18 days earlier to sorghum in 2:1 row proportion. Thus, delayed sowing of one of the intercrops for 18 days has the potential to yield higher forage of component crops and this type of intercropping might be suggested depending upon the availability of irrigation water and its fitness into the prevailing cropping system.  

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