This study was conducted at research and farmersâ€™ field. Seven new promising and three standard checks in total ten hybrid varieties were planted and evaluated in 2013 main season. At research field the genotypes were tested under sole and inter cropping in two replications and each genotype was planted in two rows using spacing 0.75 cm and 0.30 cm between consecutive maize rows and between plants, respectively. However, at on-farm the genotypes were tested on two farmersâ€™ field each genotype planted in three rows solely under sole cropping. Hawassa-Dume common bean genotype was used for intercropping purpose and planted between two consecutive maize rows. The common bean was planted with 10 cm spacing between plants. Farmers were invited to evaluate planted genotypes at hard dough stage of the crop. The objective the study was to screen maize hybrids under both sole and inter cropping systems at research field and sole crop at farmers field and finally to select hybrids that best fit for cropping systems for grain yield and other important traits. The results of the analysis showed that genotypes varied significantly for yield and other traits. The highest yields were observed for genotype-1 (10.6t/ha) and genotype-3 (10.3t/ha). However, at Hawassa research station the standard checks varieties (BH-546 and BH-547) performed better compared with other genotypes under sole cropping system. The land equivalent ratio (LER) for genotypes ranged between 1.05 and 1.41. The highest LER was observed for genotype-1 (1.41) followed by the standard check (BH-546) (1.34). This study highlighted the need for testing genotypes for their compatibility to intercropping system.
Keywords: Inter-cropping, land equivalent ratio, sole-crop, cropping-system, Zea mays L.