The market of European organic products is developing fast; in the last two decades it has reached a value of about 20 billion euro per year, with annual growth rates ranging between 10 and 15%. Organic products comply with rules that relate to sustainable production processes, and are regarded as high quality products. They are sold, generally, at higher prices than conventional products, but the progressive increase in the demand depends, to a large extent, on consumer confidence. Verification of the method of organic production is entrusted in the first instance to bodies of private inspection, and, in the second instance, to the supervisory system of public authorities. In 2011, the market of Italian organic products accounted for approximately 3% of the overall food market, placing Italy in fourth position among EU countries in terms of turnover. This implies an agricultural revolution that changed the traditional image of farmers. Through the allocation of a multifunctional role, organic farmers develop a complex system of rural life.
Aims: The main objective of the study was to identify the tomato production system, associated pest and disease problems and their management by tomato farmers in Ashanti Region.
Design of the Study: A questionnaire-based survey was conducted.
Study Place and Duration: The study was carried out at Akumadan, Agogo, Sabronum, Afari, Kofiase and Kumawu between March and May, 2015.
Methodology: Multistage sampling technique was used to select the respondents. A total of 120 respondents from six different sites were randomly selected from tomato farmers in the surveyed areas in Ashanti Region. Data collected were analyzed using Statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS).
Results: The tomato var. Power was found to be the most cultivated by the farmers. Majority of farmers cropped on farm sizes from 1.6 to 2.0ha. Tomato cultivation was done in March and September on ridges. All the respondents applied fertilizer to improve soil fertility. The major pests and diseases outlined by the respondents were: root-knot nematodes, fruit borers (caterpillars), whiteflies, damping-off, wilting and leaf curl. Majority of the respondents mentioned nematodes infestation (30%) as their major constraint followed by caterpillars (25%) and then whiteflies damage (20%). Also, the respondents observed fungal diseases such as damping-off and wilt (10%) and leaf curl (10%). All the respondents used either insecticides alone (5%) or combination of insecticides and fungicides (95%). None of the respondents used nematicides as control method, however, all of them used crop rotation and weeding as pest and disease management options in addition to pesticides. One hundred percent (100%) of the respondents said that insecticides and fungicides used were effective against insect pests and fungi, respectively. However, majority of the respondents (85%) stated that the used control strategies against root- knot nematodes were not effective.
Conclusion: Majority of respondents, in the surveyed sites, mentioned root-knot nematodes as their main pest problem to tomato production, followed by insect pests and fungi. The respondents used mainly insecticides and fungicides or a mixture of them to control insect pests and diseases. In addition, other management practices such as crop rotation and weeding were used. No nematicides were used by the respondents. Majority of the respondents considered management practices (crop rotation and weeding) against nematodes as ineffective methods. However, all the respondents considered use of insecticides and fungicides as an effective method against insect pests and fungal diseases, respectively. The study recommended training of tomato farmers on crop rotation systems that may be effective in reducing pests and diseases on tomato. Also, tomato farmers should be trained on pesticide usage, its safety and disposal.
In Côte d’Ivoire, the craze for market gardening is due, in large part, to the high demand of vegetables in urban markets especially during off-season periods. However, the yields are subject to the destructive action of dreadful enemies of such crops, including the pathogenic fungus Sclerotium rolfsii. A study on this pathogen was conducted during 12 months in the different agroecological zones (AEZ) of Côte d’Ivoire. Collections were made on pepper, tomato and eggplant crops in six agroecological zones and 93 isolates were obtained and kept in the fungal collection. The most infected zone was the humid forest zone so-called AEZ I where the attack rate was 48.38%. The other agroecological zones II, III, IV, V and VI had infection rates respectively of: 16.13%, 0%, 9.68%; 20.43% and 5.38%. Thus at the end of this survey, tomato was the most sensitive crop to the parasite compared with eggplant and pepper. And then, The AEZ I isolates had faster mycelial growth than those of the other AEZ. Finally, Of all isolates, eight morphological types were distinguished according to the production of sclerotia and air aspect of mycelium.
Damaged okra plant roots as a result of plant parasitic nematodes infection leads to a reduced water and nutrients intake. The impact of some organic soil amendments on population densities of plant parasitic nematodes and okra yield was investigated between March and December 2013 in Ghana under natural field conditions. Neem (Azadirachta indica) seed and cocoa (Theobromacacao) bean testa powders suppressed population densities of Meloidogyne incognita, Pratylenchus coffeae, Rotylenchulus reniformis and Helicotylenhus multicintus in 100 cm3 rhizosphere soils and 5 g roots weight. Suppression in population densities of the plant parasitic nematodes did not reflex into yield improvement.
Aim: A study was conducted in eastern Uganda to rationalise sorghum-groundnut mixtures through manipulation of row arrangement and orientation, under nominal N management.
Study Design: Treatments included row arrangements, viz. alternating 1:1 (single rows) and staggered 2:2 (double rows); row orientation viz. north-south and east-west; and N application, viz. 0 and 40 kg ha-1. Treatments were laid down in a randomized complete block design, in a split-split plot arrangement. Nitrogen rate was the main plot, row orientation as subplot and row arrangement as sub-subplot.
Place and Duration of Study: The study was conducted in eastern Uganda for two cropping seasons (2010b-2011a).
Methodology: Sorghum (Sekedo variety) and groundnut Red beauty variety (Emoit), were the component intercrops. Measurements included plant height, grain yield, solar radiation interception and intercropping financial advantage. Light interception was determined using a digital Lux light sensor (Lutron Model: Lx-101). The light available to the under storey intercrop was computed as a fraction to the total available (ambient) PAR. The data collected were analysed using GenStat software Version 11, and significant treatment means were separated using LSD at 5% probability level.
Results: Staggered double rows gave better groundnut grain yield irrespective of row orientation and N regime. The E-W row orientation resulted in a greater groundnut yield by up to 50%, than those facing N-S. Sorghum yield, however, was slightly increased by N rate, but not by row orientation and arrangement. Groundnut rows oriented E-W intercepted more solar radiation than those in the N-S direction, in both alternate single and double row arrangements.
Conclusion: The staggered double rows, oriented east-west and subjected to application of 40 N kg ha-1 is technically and financially the superior management option for sorghum production in eastern Uganda.
Over the last century, Eucalyptus has rapidly expanded across the globe. It has become the most planted tree species. Environmentalists fear this for the perceived negative eco-hydrological impact. Foresters and wood industries support its expansion looking at its socio-economic benefits. Ethiopia is one of the countries where Eucalyptus dominates forest development gains in the last century. The main purpose of this review is to evaluate the expansion, benefit and challenges of Eucalyptus in Ethiopia. Eucalyptus was introduced to Africa, and Ethiopia, around the end of the 19th century, in 1890s. Since then it has continued to expand to cover wider geographic areas within Ethiopia: highland and lowland. It is providing multiple purposes, economic and social, for millions of households in urban and rural areas. It has substituted effectively some of the natural forest’s functions, principally in wood supply; hence this way it has contributed to reducing pressure and in slowing down deforestation. Yet Eucalyptus sustained blame for ecosystem water and soil nutrient drains, and allelopathic effect to suppress native flora growth. Studies on these aspects of the genus are inconclusive. Some argue the extravagant use of water and nutrient, while others argue otherwise. There are studies that show water and nutrient use of Eucalyptus is based on availability: for instance, dry season and wet season uses are not the same. The most known about Eucalyptus is its high nutrient and water use efficiency. Therefore, when evaluated on per volume of water, nutrient and land allocated for biomass production, Eucalyptus will provide the highest biomass return. This may make it the preferred species. The paper concludes that the development of Eucalyptus forestry is crucial in narrowing the gap between forest product demand and supply in the current context of Ethiopia and most African countries, but such development should be managed with proper silviculture: Planted in the right site and tended properly to optimize its positive values and reduce possible negative effects.