Weed growth and groundnut (Arachis hypogaea L.) performance in response to timing and frequency of weeding in Sierra Leone

Abu Sesay


A two-year (1991 and 1992) field study was conducted at Njala in the forest-savanna transitional zone of southern Sierra Leone to examine the effects of timing and frequency of weed removal on groundnut (Arachis hypogaea L.) yield and weed growth. Removing weeds once, at 10, 15, 20, 25, or 30 days after sowing (DAS), twice at 15 and 25 DAS, or three times at 15, 25, and 40 DAS resulted in significantly (P < 0.01) larger groundnut pod yield. Weeding also significantly (P < 0.01) reduced weed biomass in the weeded plots relative to the unweeded plots. Calculated pod yield reductions due to uncontrolled weed growth was 75 and 55% in 1991 and 1992, respectively. The number of pods per plant and kernel weight contributed to the pod yield differences among the weeding treatments. Weeding once at 20 DAS produced yields that were comparable to those of the clean-weeded control in both years.


Groundnut; Weeding; Weed biomass; Yield loss

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