The need to obtain crop varieties that are tolerant to heat and drought cannot be overemphasised especially with the threat of climate change to agricultural productivity in sub-Saharan Africa. Bambara groundnut has been identified as a drought tolerant crop; however, variations exist among landraces with respect to drought tolerance. An experiment was therefore conducted to evaluate the performance of five bambara groundnut landraces: Black eye, Burkina, NAV 4, NAV Red and Tom, to drought and heat stress, at the Irrigation Company of Upper East Region (ICOUR) at Tono-Navrongo in the Upper East Region of Ghana. The experiment was arranged in a Randomized Complete Block Design with three replicates. The heat trial was irrigated once weekly to field capacity until crop maturity. The drought trial was irrigated once weekly until 30 DAS, after which irrigation ceased. Burkina, a landrace from Burkina Faso produced the highest pod yield of 1.2 t/ha under the heat treatment. Tom did not produce any pod yield. Under drought, Burkina exhibited the greatest root dry weight and leaf area at 120 DAS, and had the longest leaf area duration (LAD). Burkina exhibited bunch canopy architecture, while NAV 4, NAV Red, and Black eye had an intermediate canopy type and Tom a spreading type. Burkina proved the most drought and heat tolerant among the five landraces evaluated. Though a drought tolerant crop, temperatures beyond 38°C and low relative humidity can negatively affect pod yield of bambara groundnut even when irrigation is provided. It is important to test the performance of a crop under a new environment before money is invested into its production in that environment.
Key words: Bambara groundnut, drought, heat stress, irrigation, pod yield.
Copyright © 2023 Author(s) retain the copyright of this article.
This article is published under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0