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Research NotePerformance of Stylosanthes hamata in the rangelands of northern Ghana

Authors
Publisher
NISC
Publication Date
Keywords
  • Oversowing
  • Rangeland Improvement
  • Savanna

Abstract

Stylosanthes hamata (stylo) was introduced into communities in the Northern Savanna Zone of Ghana in 1994 for rangeland improvement through oversowing. The objective of this study was to assess the performance of S. hamata in northern Ghana. The study was carried out in 15 communities in five districts in September 2003. The instruments used to gather data were questionnaires, direct field measurements and field observations. The results of the study indicated that stylo plants were found in places where oversowing was not carried out. The average plant population densities for new and old plants were similar (13.6 vs 13.8 plants m–2) (p ≥ 0.05). Old plants were found to be significantly (p ≤ 0.05) taller than new plants but the biomass yield of the latter was significantly (p ≤ 0.05) better than the former. Old plants had better flowering ability than the new plants (p ≤ 0.05). Pests of stylo included grasshoppers (Zonocerus variegatus) and black ants (Delichoderus thoracicus). Other plant species were observed to have grown alongside stylo, and some of these were weeds that suppressed the growth of stylo. The study demonstrated that S. hamata was successfully established in community rangelands in northern Ghana.African Journal of Range & Forage Science 2007, 24(3): 155–157

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