THE FARMING SYSTEMS OF 
POTATO PRODUCTION AREAS OF 
CHENCHA, 
SOUTHERN ETHIOPIA
Waga Mazengia1, Rogier Schulte2, Yenenesh ...
1. Introduction
• Potato has been cultivated since 1858
• Chencha is one of the potato production 
• A research‐based deve...
2. Material & Methods
The study area
• Chencha a district in Southern Ethiopia 
– Area = 373 km2
– Population density  388...
2. Materials & Methods
No
.
Kebeles (areas)  No. of 
villages
Altitude 
(masl)
Agro‐ecological 
representation
1 Losha  4 ...
2. Materials & Methods
Farmer selection
• 57 HHs selected randomly 
• 9 ‐ 14 HHs from each kebele
Laka Kebele
2. Materials & Methods
Data collection & analysis
• Individual HH interview 
• Group discussions 
• Secondary data
• Feeli...
3. Findings
Rainfall pattern 
• Bimodal (2 seasons)
– 1st season ‐ March ‐ May     …… more potato
– 2nd season ‐ June ‐ October
• Annual rainfall
– Fluctuate over years
• 830 mm  (2003) 
• 1679 mm (2006)
Types of crops grown 
• 28 crop types
– 5 root & tubers 
– 6 cereals 
– 6 pulses 
– 8 vegetable &fruits 
– 3 oil & stimula...
Trend of potato production
• Increasing in area & production
– Replacing 
• Plectranthus edulis
• Arisaema schimperianum
•...
Practice of using
improved varieties
• Farmers use improved varieties mainly: 
Potato  (73%), 
Wheat  (77%) 
Maize   (72%)...
Purposes of growing crops
• Potato 
– Food & cash (Rich & Medium)
– Food              (poor)
Crops  Main purpose of 
growi...
Purposes of growing crops
Crops
% of respondents by wealth class
Rich Medium Poor
Food
Cash 
Food 
&Cash
Food
Cash
Food 
&...
Overall importance of crops
• Enset ‐ 1st
• Potato – 2nd &3rd
Crops  Ranks by wealth classes Over all 
importanceRich (n=1...
Enset
(Enset ventricosum)
Cropping systems
i) Intercropping 
– Sole cropping is most common 
– Some practices of intercropping 
– No potato intercro...
Cropping systems
ii) Double cropping / rotation in a year
– Common 
– Different arrangements (34)
– The most common 
• Pot...
Sowing dates
• Potato
– February                              1st season
– End of Aug – mid Sept      2nd season 
Crop typ...
Seed rates
• Potato =   600 – 1600 kg ha‐1
1800 – 2000 recommendation
Crop type  Seed rate (kgha‐1) National 
recommendati...
Maturity dates
• Potato =   3 – 4* months
Maturity  
(months)
Potato  3 – 4*
Sweet potato 4 ‐ 6
Wheat  4* ‐5
Triticale  9
...
Productivity
• Potato
– 7,000    (local)
– 15,000  (improved) 
– 11,000 (Av.)
Crop type  Yield (kgha‐1) National productiv...
Tillage & weeding frequency
• Potato
– Tillage           4
– Weeding      1 – 3  
(row & local planting)
Crop type  Plough...
Soil types
• 12 soils types (local classification) 
• Abundant 
• local classification 
– fertility status 
– sticky ness ...
1
2
3
4
Kalta
Fertilizer use
• Practice use for crops
– DAP   81%
– Urea  78%
– FYM    97%
– Compost  40%
• Fertilizer use for potato
– ...
Seed & food sources
0
10
20
30
40
50
60
70
80
Own farm Own farm & external
% of households
Fig Sources of seed and food 
S...
Income sources
0
10
20
30
40
50
60
70
80
90
100
Crop Livestock Weaving Trading Selling
labour
Remittance Hiring out
oxen
%...
Constraints of crop production
No. Constraints   Remark 
1 Crop disease 
1. Enset  BW
2. Potato  LB, BW
3. Wheat  Yellow r...
4. Conclusion
• Diverse crop types 
• Potato is one of the most important crops
• There are diverse soil types (3 major) 
...
4. Conclusion
• Crop production is constrained with different 
challenges that need interventions
1. Pests are very import...
4. Conclusion
2. Soil fertility is declining. 
Proper practices should be in place to restore soil 
fertility    (conserva...
Sess2 5 mazengia-th1_abs171
Sess2 5 mazengia-th1_abs171
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Sess2 5 mazengia-th1_abs171

  1. 1. THE FARMING SYSTEMS OF  POTATO PRODUCTION AREAS OF  CHENCHA,  SOUTHERN ETHIOPIA Waga Mazengia1, Rogier Schulte2, Yenenesh Tadese1, Denis Griffin2,  Steffen Schulz3 and Paul C. Struik1 1Wageningen University, Netherlands 2Teagasc, Ireland 3CIP‐Ethiopia
  2. 2. 1. Introduction • Potato has been cultivated since 1858 • Chencha is one of the potato production  • A research‐based development project has been launched  to make Chencha centre of excellence for seed potato – Vita,  – Teagasc,  – Wageningen University  • One of the aims of the project is  – to ensure sustainability of the farming system while producing  potato • Therefore, there was a need to know major crop  production systems & bottlenecks
  3. 3. 2. Material & Methods The study area • Chencha a district in Southern Ethiopia  – Area = 373 km2 – Population density  388 persons km‐2 – Altitude = 2000 to 3000 masl – Agro‐ecology is classified as  • highland (>2500 masl),  82%  • midland (2000 – 2500 masl), 18%  • minimum to 11 ‐ 13 0C;      • maximum to 18 ‐ 24 0C  • The district has 45 administrative units (kebeles) 
  4. 4. 2. Materials & Methods No . Kebeles (areas)  No. of  villages Altitude  (masl) Agro‐ecological  representation 1 Losha  4 2749 High land 2 Yuera 5 2600 High land 3 Laka  6 2578 High land 4 Gendo Gembela  2 2640 High land 5 Tegecha  4 2250 Mid land 21 • 5 kebeles (1 mid & 4 highland) • 21 villages   
  5. 5. 2. Materials & Methods Farmer selection • 57 HHs selected randomly  • 9 ‐ 14 HHs from each kebele Laka Kebele
  6. 6. 2. Materials & Methods Data collection & analysis • Individual HH interview  • Group discussions  • Secondary data • Feeling method & visual  observation (soil texture & colour)  • SPSS software
  7. 7. 3. Findings
  8. 8. Rainfall pattern  • Bimodal (2 seasons) – 1st season ‐ March ‐ May     …… more potato – 2nd season ‐ June ‐ October
  9. 9. • Annual rainfall – Fluctuate over years • 830 mm  (2003)  • 1679 mm (2006)
  10. 10. Types of crops grown  • 28 crop types – 5 root & tubers  – 6 cereals  – 6 pulses  – 8 vegetable &fruits  – 3 oil & stimulant  crops  • 7 Widely grown (60-80% HHs) – potato  – enset – wheat  – barley  – kale  – faba bean   – apple  • # of crops / HH – 5 ‐ 14  range – 7 ‐ 8 most 
  11. 11. Trend of potato production • Increasing in area & production – Replacing  • Plectranthus edulis • Arisaema schimperianum • Local potato cultivars  – Reason • Introduction of new productive varieties
  12. 12. Practice of using improved varieties • Farmers use improved varieties mainly:  Potato  (73%),  Wheat  (77%)  Maize   (72%) Barley   (21%)  • Rich farmers use more E.g. potato: Rich           100% Medium   86% Poor          33% % of respondents  Wealth status  Total Rich Medium Poor % n % n % n Potato  100 17 86 22 33 18 73 Wheat  94 17 82 22 56 18 77 Barley  29 16 27 22 6 18 21 Faba bean 12 16 6 18 0 13 6 Field pea  6 16 0 18 0 13 2 Maize  100 1 50 4 67 3 72
  13. 13. Purposes of growing crops • Potato  – Food & cash (Rich & Medium) – Food              (poor) Crops  Main purpose of  growing Wealth class Potato, enset, wheat,  sweet potato Food & cash Rich & medium Food Poor Barley & haricot bean Food All Vegetables Food & sale Rich & medium Apple  Sale  All • Potato produce – Food   61% – Cash   12%  – Seed   27%
  14. 14. Purposes of growing crops Crops % of respondents by wealth class Rich Medium Poor Food Cash  Food  &Cash Food Cash Food  &Cash Food Cash Food  &Cash Potato 17 11 72 36 0 64 83 0 17 Enset 17 11 72 36 0 64 83 0 17 Wheat 17 11 72 45 0 55 83 0 17 Barley 56 0 44 77 0 23 94 0 6 Faba Bean 50 0 50 64 0 36 91 0 9 Field Pea 42 0 58 60 0 40 88 0 13 Kale 28 0 72 59 0 41 53 0 47 Apple 0 79 14 0 82 0 0 86 0 • Potato  – Food & cash (Rich & Medium) – Food              (poor) • Potato produce utilizatn – Food   61% – Cash   12%  – Seed   27%
  15. 15. Overall importance of crops • Enset ‐ 1st • Potato – 2nd &3rd Crops  Ranks by wealth classes Over all  importanceRich (n=17) Medium (n=22) Poor (n=18) 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Enset 83 6 6 0 82 5 0 5 89 6 0 0 84 5 2 2 Wheat 6 17 28 28 5 5 27 36 0 11 28 33 3 10 28 33 Barley  0 33 33 17 0 32 27 14 0 56 28 17 0 40 29 16 Potato 6 39 28 17 9 50 23 18 11 17 28 22 9 36 26 19 Maize 6 0 0 0 5 0 5 0 0 0 0 0 3 0 2 0 Kale 0 0 0 22 0 0 5 14 0 6 6 17 0 2 3 17 Apple 0 0 6 0 0 5 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 2 0 % HH by wealth classes Rank  Rich  (n=17) Medium  (n=22) Poor  (n=18) Over all  1st 6 9 11 9 2nd 39 50 17 36 3rd 28 23 28 26 4th 17 18 22 19
  16. 16. Enset (Enset ventricosum)
  17. 17. Cropping systems i) Intercropping  – Sole cropping is most common  – Some practices of intercropping  – No potato intercropping  Major intercrops  Minor intercrops  Common  Less common Barley  Lentil  Linseed  Wheat  Linseed  Linseed & Barley All major field crops  except field pea  Arisaema  schimperianum ‐ Enset  Kale  ‐ Apple  Kale & garlic  Faba bean & barley  Faba bean  Field pea  ‐ Maize  Haricot bean  Sweet potato 
  18. 18. Cropping systems ii) Double cropping / rotation in a year – Common  – Different arrangements (34) – The most common  • Potato ‐ wheat or barley   (95% ) • Barley – potato   (52%)  Rotating crops (preceding followed by succeeding  crops) % of  responden ts Rotating crops (preceding followed by  succeeding crops) % of  responde nts Potato – Potato 3.4 Sorghum – Fallow 1.7 Potato – Wheat/Barley 94.8 Haricot bean – Potato 5.2 Potato – Faba bean/Field pea 20.7 Haricot bean – Wheat/Barley/Tef 6.9 Potato – Maize 1.7 Sweet potato – Potato/Sweet potato 3.4 Potato – Sweet potato 3.4 Sweet potato – Wheat/Barley 5.2 Barley – Potato  51.7 Sweet potato – Maize 3.4 Barley – Wheat/Barley 48.3 Sweet potato – Haricot bean 1.7 Barley – Faba bean/Field pea 41.4 Sweet potato – Fallow 1.7 Barley – Haricot bean 3.4 Tef – Maize/Barley 3.4 Barley – Wheat/Tef 3.4 Tef – Haricot bean  3.4 Barley – Sweet potato 3.4 Fallow – Potato 34.5 Barley Fallow 3 4 Fallow Wheat/Barley 51 7
  19. 19. Sowing dates • Potato – February                              1st season – End of Aug – mid Sept      2nd season  Crop type Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Enset La Wheat L a GG, Lo, La Barley Potato Faba bean L a GG, Lo Field pea Kale Linseed Lentil P. edulis GG Lo A.schimperi anum Cabbage, carrot, beet root, onion & garlic Trans plant - rain fed Raise seedlings Trans plant - irrigati on Raise seedlin gsGG, Lo, La La Apple GG, Lo La Maize Te Sweet potato Te Te Te Te Te Te Te Te Te Te Te Te Haricotbean Te Tef Te Te Sorghum Te Coffee Te Potato
  20. 20. Seed rates • Potato =   600 – 1600 kg ha‐1 1800 – 2000 recommendation Crop type  Seed rate (kgha‐1) National  recommendation Potato  600 – 1600 1800 ‐ 2000 Wheat  88 ‐ 160 125 ‐ 175 Barley  120 ‐ 140 Faba bean  40 Field pea  80 Enset 1 x 1m ‐ 2 x 2m Sweet potato ‐
  21. 21. Maturity dates • Potato =   3 – 4* months Maturity   (months) Potato  3 – 4* Sweet potato 4 ‐ 6 Wheat  4* ‐5 Triticale  9 Barley  4* ‐ 5 Maize  5‐6 Sorghum  9 Tef  3.5 Faba bean  4* ‐ 5 Field pea  4* ‐ 5 Maturity   (months) Lentil  4* ‐ 5 Linseed  4* ‐ 5 Haricot bean 3 Enset  36 ‐ 120 Kale, carrot & beet root 3 Onion & garlic 4 Plectranthus edulis 7* ‐ 9 Arisaema  schimperianum  36 Apple  36 ‐ 60 Coffee  36
  22. 22. Productivity • Potato – 7,000    (local) – 15,000  (improved)  – 11,000 (Av.) Crop type  Yield (kgha‐1) National productivity (2012)  Potato  11,000 (Av.) 7989 kg/ha Sweet potato 18,000 Wheat  1,700 (2,600)* 2000 Triticale  1,800 Barley  1,600 – (3690)  Tef  (450) Faba bean  500 – (940) Field pea  300 – (840)  Apple  (6857) Note: The source of information of figures in parentheses was Chencha OoA, 2012
  23. 23. Tillage & weeding frequency • Potato – Tillage           4 – Weeding      1 – 3   (row & local planting) Crop type  Ploughing  frequency Weeding frequency Potato  4 1‐3 Sweet potato 3 2 Plectranthus  edulis 1 ‐ 4 2 ‐ 3 Arisaema  schimperianum 1 0 Enset  1 ‐ 3 1 ‐ 2 Wheat  3 ‐ 4 1 Barley  3 ‐ 4 1 Maize  3 2 Tef  4 2 Sorghum  3 1 Haricot bean 3 1 Faba bean  1 ‐ 2 0 ‐ 1 Field pea 1 ‐ 2 1
  24. 24. Soil types • 12 soils types (local classification)  • Abundant  • local classification  – fertility status  – sticky ness  – hardiness to plough 1. Modo   69 % Clay loam  to loam  2. Gobo 67 % Clay, clay loam  3. Kalta   50 % Clay 
  25. 25. 1 2 3 4 Kalta
  26. 26. Fertilizer use • Practice use for crops – DAP   81% – Urea  78% – FYM    97% – Compost  40% • Fertilizer use for potato – Inorganic  60% – Organic  21%  – Inorga + Orga    19% – No fertilizer 0% Crop  Fertilizer type & practicing  households (%)   Inorg anic  organic Inorganic  & organic No  fertilize Potato  60 21 19 0 Wheat  50 29 21 0 Barley 19 53 23 5 Enset  ‐ 98 ‐ 2 Vegetable &  apple seedling  ‐ 66 ‐ 34 Faba bean  ‐ 7 ‐ 57 Field pea  ‐ 5 ‐ 47 Sweet potato  5 3 ‐ 7 Maize  9 ‐ ‐ 5 Tef  3 12
  27. 27. Seed & food sources 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 Own farm Own farm & external % of households Fig Sources of seed and food  Source Seed Seed Food Food
  28. 28. Income sources 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 Crop Livestock Weaving Trading Selling labour Remittance Hiring out oxen % of respondents Income sources % of households against income sources
  29. 29. Constraints of crop production No. Constraints   Remark  1 Crop disease  1. Enset  BW 2. Potato  LB, BW 3. Wheat  Yellow rest (new vars.) 2 Unproductive varieties & shortage of  improved seed supply 3 Un predictable rainfall  4 Decline in soil fertility & high cost of  fertilizers  Continuous cropping &  erosion  5 Insect pests on potato, field pea & kale  6 Land shortage  7 Vertebrate pests (monkeys, apes,  porcupine)
  30. 30. 4. Conclusion • Diverse crop types  • Potato is one of the most important crops • There are diverse soil types (3 major)  • The main income sources are crop products  including potato
  31. 31. 4. Conclusion • Crop production is constrained with different  challenges that need interventions 1. Pests are very important challenges of potato.  Specific pest types should be further identified &  proper control measures taken  2. Improved seed demands are not addressed. There is a need to strengthen seed production at local  level
  32. 32. 4. Conclusion 2. Soil fertility is declining.  Proper practices should be in place to restore soil  fertility    (conservation, fertilizer efficient methods ...) 5. Cash shortage has limited input purchasing power. Introduction of income generating activities would solve  problems related to cash shortage 6. Farmers grow many crops using different management  practices on small area. However, there is no information  on the efficiency of management practices in terms of  production, economic & labour use. Therefore, there is a  need to know their efficiencies for sustainable production.    

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