Effect of best-bet sustainable land management technologies of minimum till, agroforestry shrubs and box ridges on yield of maize (SC403) in Nsipe, Malawi
Food insecurity is a serious challenge to most of the Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). In this region, production levels of small-scale farmers, who contribute a significant proportion of the maize produced, has been far much below the expected potential. With decreasing land area, increases in productivity remains the only viable solution. However, efforts in increasing yield from genetic improvement and use of inorganic fertilisers is hampered by drought and floods. Coincidentally, the demonstrations of sustainable land management (SLM) technologies were done during the season characterised by heavy rains at the onset of the rainy season, followed by a terminal drought at the middle of the season. The SLM technologies implemented (minimum tillage and use of box ridges enhanced crop productivity whereby maize did exceptionally well (13-28% higher than farmer practices) due to availability of residual moisture despite the drought. This evidence and participatory approach used through the demonstrations of soil and water conservation practices would ensure wide adoption by farmers facing continued land degradation in the area.