n Indilinga African Journal of Indigenous Knowledge Systems - A survey of farming practices and cassava pests and diseases : a case study for Mseleni Village, KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa
|Article Title||A survey of farming practices and cassava pests and diseases : a case study for Mseleni Village, KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa|
|© Publisher:||UZ Foundation|
|Journal||Indilinga African Journal of Indigenous Knowledge Systems|
|Affiliations||1 Mangosuthu University of Technology and 2 Agricultural Research Council|
|Publication Date||Dec 2015|
|Pages||262 - 271|
|Keyword(s)||Cassava, Diseases, Fertilizers, Pests and Weeding|
Although cassava is one of the staple food crops in Africa, it is cultivated mainly by subsistence producers in South Africa. Production is constrained by a number of agronomic, biological, environmental and socio-economic factors responsible for yield reduction. A study was conducted from May to August 2006 to evaluate cultural practices applied in cassava production and to evaluate the prevalence of pests and diseases on cassava at Mseleni village. A semi-structured questionnaire was utilized to collect data. Almost 80% of the farmers, both male and female, were randomly selected to take part in the survey. Results from the survey revealed that there was no application of commercial inputs (fertilizers or pesticides) used in the production process of cassava. Other important production constraints in cassava production were pests and diseases. It was established that 91% of farmers in the village did not control pests in their cassava at all, while 9% indicated that they used household remedies. Generally, cultural practices which are fundamental and crucial in cassava production were not properly executed and these had a significant negative impact on cassava total yield. In order to improve cassava yield in the village, it is recommended that practices such as incorporating green manures in the soil, application of fertilizers and the use of disease-free planting material, be adopted.
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