ASSESSMENT OF MAIZE (Zea mays L.) VARIETIES FOR TOLERANCE TO CONTRASTING SOIL-NITROGEN ENVIRONMENTS IN OGBOMOSO, NIGERIA
Keywords:Agronomic traits, Grain yield, Low-N tolerance, N-environments, Rank summation index, Superior variety.
Millions of resource-limited farmers cultivate maize under low-soil nitrogen (N), which is a major constraint to maize production in Nigeria. Therefore, the objectives of this study were to: (i) assess the existence of genetic variation among some maize varieties for grain yield and other agronomic traits under varying N conditions, (ii) identify maize varieties with favourable alleles for tolerance to low-soil N and superior performance for grain yield across N environments. Eight maize varieties were evaluated under four (0, 30, 90 and 150 kg N ha-1) N environments at the Teaching and Research Farm of Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Ogbomoso, in 2021. The experiment was laid down in a randomized complete block design with six replicates. Data obtained were subjected to analysis of variance for each N level. Rank summation index was used to select superior variety. Significant (P < 0.01) mean squares were observed for grain yield and other agronomic traits of the maize varieties, across the (N) environments. Mean grain yields under low and optimal N environments were 2.8 t ha-1 and 3.8 t ha-1, respectively. Outstanding varieties (Pioneer KMK (30Y87); Kapam 10 and Sammaz 52) were identified by rank summation index and low-N tolerant base index, indicating that the varieties possess favourable alleles for tolerance to soil-nitrogen stress.
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