Latest Research on Intercropping: Feb – 2020

Cereal–Legume Intercropping Systems

This chapter describes the varied aspects of cereal-legume intercropping systems. Intercropping is that the growing of two or more crop species simultaneously within the same field during a season . The intercropping of legumes with cereals offers scope for developing energy-efficient and sustainable agriculture. the most sorts of intercropping include mixed intercropping, row intercropping, and strip intercropping. Crop combinations differ with geographical location and there could also be intercropping of tree crops, intercropping of tree and field crops, or intercropping of field crops. Combinations of crops are determined primarily by the length of the season and therefore the adaptation of crops to particular environments. Different indices are suggested for evaluating productivity and efficiency per unit area of land of cereal-legume intercrop systems. [1]

Crop Rotation and Intercropping Strategies for Weed Management

Results of a literature survey indicate that weed population density and biomass production could also be markedly reduced using crop rotation (temporal diversification) and intercropping (spatial diversification) strategies. Crop rotation resulted in emerged weed densities in test crops that were lower in 21 cases, higher in 1 case, and equivalent in 5 cases as compared to monoculture systems. In 12 cases where weed seed density was reported, seed density in crop rotation was lower in 9 cases and equivalent in 3 cases in comparison to monocultures of the component crops. In intercropping systems where a main crop was intersown with a “smother” crop species, weed biomass within the intercrop was lower in 47 cases and better in 4 cases than within the main crop grown alone (as a sole crop); a variable response was observed in 3 cases. When intercrops were composed of two or more main crops, weed biomass within the intercrop was less than altogether of the component sole crops in 12 cases, intermediate between component sole crops in 10 cases, and better than all sole crops in 2 cases. [2]

Intercropping Systems in Tropical Africa

Tropical Africa lies south of the Sahara bounded by imaginary lines both north and south of the equator. This chapter considers the characteristics of cropping systems in traditional farming practices as a basis for a survey of multiple cropping systems in tropical Africa and a review of related research in relevant countries. the foremost widespread multiple cropping systems contains mixed intercropping and relay intercropping. the center Belt of Nigeria may be a transition zone between the basis crops oilpalm‐cocoa belt of the south and therefore the sorghum‐millet‐cotton‐groundnut belt of the northern states. the foremost widespread cropping system in Africa consists of mixed intercropping in compound farms which forms a posh but stable agroecosystem. [3]

Synchrony of nitrogen supply and crop demand are driven via high maize density in maize/pea strip intercropping

Cereal density may influence the balance between nitrogen (N) supply and crop N demand in cereal/legume intercrop systems. The effect of maize (Zea mays L.) plant density on N utilization and N fertilizer supply in maize/pea (Pisum sativum L.) strip intercropping was evaluated during a field study with sole maize, sole pea, and intercropped maize/pea with three maize densities (D1, 45,000 plants ha−1; D2, 52,500 plants ha−1; D3, 60,000 plants ha−1) and two N treatments (N0, 0 kg N ha−1; N1, 450 kg N ha−1 for maize and 225 kg N ha−1 for pea). Soil mineral N in intercropped strips decreased with increased maize density. Increased maize density decreased N accumulation for intercropped pea but increased it for maize and therefore the sum of both intercrops. The land equivalent ratio for grain yield (LER grain) showed a 24–30% advantage for intercrops than corresponding sole crops, and was greater with D3 than D1 and D2. [4]

Effect of Monocropping and Intercropping of Vegetable-Flower Components on Production, Economics and Land Use Efficiency under Sub-Tropical Zone of West Bengal, India

Intercropping may be a common practice which allows for better resource use efficiency, increases yield stability as compared to monocropping. this research work was conducted at Horticultural Research Station, Mondouri, Faculty of Horticulture, Bidhan Chandra Krishi Viswavidyalaya, Nadia, West Bengal , India from July-December, 2017. The experiment was laid call at Randomised Block Design (RBD) with five treatments and 4 replications. The treatments were as follows: T0 =cauliflower as monocrop, T1=cauliflower intercropped with marigold, T2= cauliflower intercropped with Balsam, T3= marigold monocrop, T4= balsam monocrop. When cauliflower intercropped with balsam (T2), cauliflower size and quality, balsam flower number and overall yield attributes were significantly increased. Land resource was properly utilized. [5]


[1] Ofori, F. and Stern, W.R., 1987. Cereal–legume intercropping systems. In Advances in agronomy (Vol. 41, pp. 41-90). Academic Press. (Web Link)

[2] Liebman, M. and Dyck, E., 1993. Crop rotation and intercropping strategies for weed management. Ecological applications, 3(1), (Web Link)

[3] Okigbo, B.N. and Greenland, D.J., 1976. Intercropping systems in tropical Africa. Multiple cropping, 27, (Web Link)

[4] Synchrony of nitrogen supply and crop demand are driven via high maize density in maize/pea strip intercropping
Zhilong Fan, Yanhua Zhao, Qiang Chai, Cai Zhao, Aizhong Yu, Jeffrey A. Coulter, Yantai Gan & Weidong Cao
Scientific Reports volume 9, (Web Link)

[5] Mondal, S., Sarkar, M., Ghosh, T. and Maity, T. (2018) “Effect of Monocropping and Intercropping of Vegetable-Flower Components on Production, Economics and Land Use Efficiency under Sub-Tropical Zone of West Bengal, India”, Current Journal of Applied Science and Technology, 26(6), (Web Link)

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