Monitoring and Forecasting of Sorghum Yield in the Mechanized Rainfed Agriculture Sector in the Sudan

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Mohamed, Yasir
Ahmed, Mukhtar
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A study was undertaken to test the validity of an FAO method for monitoring and forecasting sorghum yield in three main sorghum production areas of the mechanized rain-fed sub-sector; namely, Al-Gadarif, Al-Damazin and Kosti. The periods of crop development were determined from the plots of mean normal (30 years) rainfall (Pn) and potential evapotranspiration (PET) versus 10-days interval (dekad) during the growing season. Annual water satisfaction (SI) indices were estimated for 10 years from annual water balance for the study period (1987- 1996). This index indicates the extent to which the water requirement of the crop was satisfied in cumulative way. Highly significant cubic relationships between Pn or PET and seasonal dekads were obtained. The growing season of Al-Gadarif was semi-normal and that of Al-Damazin was typically normal, whereas that of Kosti was characterized by the absence of a wet period. An example for the calculation of SI for sorghum grown in 1987 in each of the three study areas was presented and analyzed. The correlations between sorghum yield and seasonal rainfall was highly significant (r2 =0.747) and linear in Al-Damazin area and significant (r2= 0.514) and cubic in Al-Gadarif area. The relationship was not significant in Kosti area. The correlation between yield and SI were significant and cubic for Al-Gadarif (r2=0.537) and Al-Damazin (r2= 0.439) but not for Kosti. The pooled data gave a significant correlation (r2=0.127) between yield and SI index. However, the coefficient of determination was very low.
Sorghum; rainfed agriculture; water satisfaction index