African Journal of
Plant Science

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Plant Sci.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1996-0824
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJPS
  • Start Year: 2007
  • Published Articles: 768

Full Length Research Paper

Assessing production constraints, management and use of pearl millet in the Guinea Savanna Agro-ecology of Ghana

Peter Anabire Asungre
  • Peter Anabire Asungre
  • CSIR-Savanna Agricultural Research Institute, P. O. Box 46, Bawku, Ghana.
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Richard Akromah
  • Richard Akromah
  • Faculty of Agriculture, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kabwe, Zambia.
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Alexander Wiredo Kena
  • Alexander Wiredo Kena
  • Faculty of Agriculture, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kabwe, Zambia.
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Prakash Gangashetty
  • Prakash Gangashetty
  • International Crop Research Institute for Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) India.
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  •  Received: 28 August 2021
  •  Accepted: 22 November 2021
  •  Published: 30 November 2021

Abstract

The adoption of new and high yielding pearl millet (Pennisetum glaucum (L.) R. Br.) varieties can be boosted if they correspond to farmers’ preferences and answer the constraints prevailing in the production environments. Therefore, the focus of this study was to assess production constraints, farmers’ preferences and choices of varieties among pearl millet cultivating farmers using participatory rural appraisal (PRA) in the guinea savanna agro-ecological zone of Ghana where the crop is grown. Data collection was through mixed methods of focus group discussion (FGD) and individual interviews with 295 (45 for FGD and 250 for individual interviews) farmers covering 45 communities. Results indicated that the major constraints of production included low yields, bird damage, poor soils, erratic rainfall, downy mildew disease, head insects, and early maturity. Majority of pearl millet farmers depend on own seed source due to lack of access to and low knowledge of improved seeds. Breeding for high grain yield, earliness, resistance to downy mildew disease and bird attack varieties were the leading traits of preference that research should focus on. It is therefore anticipated that breeding program would integrate the product profiling proposed in this work for enhance adoption of new pearl millet varieties in Ghana.

 

Key words: Participatory rural appraisal, constraint, pearl millet Guinea savanna, Ghana.