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Effect of Sorghum Seed Treatment in Burkina Faso varies with Baseline Crop Performance and Geographical Location

Sorghum [Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench] is a major subsistence crop throughout the region of Sahel. With the exception of seeds and labour, no agricultural inputs are in general used in sorghum production since the grain is of a relatively low commercial value and the risk of losing the crop to drought, flooding, etc. is substantial. A meta-analysis of 118 field experiments was carried out to identify conditions in which two protective seed treatments could support a yield increase of sorghum in Burkina Faso. The two treatments were: i) treatment with the pesticide Calthio C (thiram and chlorpyrifos) and ii) treatment with an aqueous extract from the plant clipta alba. Both treatments were found to produce a yield increase (Medians: Calthio C +199 kg ha-1, P<2×10-9; E. alba +90.5 kg ha-1 P40% yield increase) were found to carry a comparatively high load of the infectious ascomycetes: Fusarium equiseti, Macrophomina phaseolina and Curvularia lunata.

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