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Archive for the ‘QUICKWIN PROJECTS’ Category

Et la réponse est?… Un instant. Laissez-nous vous raconter une histoire d’abord. Une histoire à ré-inventer la roue… ou peut-être pas.

Il était une fois, une grosse tempête, quelque part dans le Dakota du Sud. Ce n’était pas l’orage providentiel dont les fermiers rêvaient après plusieurs vilaines sécheresses. Elle était noire. Elle était sèche. Elle était vicieuse. Mauvaise. (more…)

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And the answer is?… Hold on tight.  Let us tell you a short story first. A story about re-inventing the wheel… or maybe not.

Once upon a time, a massive storm came to life somewhere in South Dakota. It was not the refreshing rainstorm farmers had prayed for after several ugly drought seasons. It was dark. It was dry. It was nasty.  Malevolent. And it was only November 11, 1933, the first of many. But not long after Black Sunday cleared, answers were sought. Solutions were found. Of course, drought was the trigger. But the cause was supernatural: it was the Dust Bowlers. It was human. And so were the solutions: Agro-forestry. Crop rotation. Strip farming. Terracing. CONTOUR PLOWING. (more…)

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Map of climate similarity to the Maroua, Cameron trial site, based on the Homologue™ model. The areas in red are the most similar in terms of rainfall, temperature and seasonal weather pattern.

While Asia and Latin America have benefitted from the Green Revolution, agricultural yields in Africa have increased little over the last half century.  This gap is due, in part, to the current state of African research systems. Improved systems will lead to increased yields, a solution that African governments and donors already recognize. (more…)

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Remember your last physical checkup? The nurse took a blood sample and off it dashed to the lab. What happened next is oblivious to many of us. In fact, we only worry about the results. Complete blood counts. Cholesterol. Signs of anemia. Hints of diabetes. WE WANT STRONG HEALTH. Well today, we’re going to show you what happens in-between. Just a quick glance. With a twist. Real-world, organic style. Just imagine… your body is a smallholder agricultural landscape of West Africa. Inside you have vessels (cart paths), lymph nodes (fallows), neurons (humans), energy reserves (fields), and… blood cells (trees). Your ability to maintain healthy tree counts on your fields may well determine your future. (more…)

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Petit flash-back sur votre dernière visite médicale? L’infirmière vous prélève un échantillon de sang et hop, direction le labo. Direttissimo. Ce qui se passe après? On en sait trop rien. Tout ce qu’on veut savoir, c’est les résultats. Bilan sanguin. Cholestérol. Anémie. Signes de diabète. SANTE DE CHEVAL. Eh bien aujourd’hui, on va vous montrer ce qui se passe derrière les rideaux. Du labo. Juste un coup d’œil. Comme dans la vraie vie, enfin presque… à la sauce champêtre. Imaginez juste… que votre corps est un paysage agricole de petits producteurs ouest-Africains. Là-dedans, vous avez des vaisseaux (chemins), des nœuds lymphatiques (jachères), des neurones (humains), des réserves d’énergie (champs), et… des globules (arbres). Votre capacité à entretenir une saine densité d’arbres sur vos champs pourrait bien déterminer votre futur. En maintenant les nutriments du sol, gages de fertilité. En régulant naturellement la température de la peau et du corps. En élevant la nappe phréatique pour hydrater l’épiderme. En apportant des compléments nutritifs à votre régime alimentaire. (more…)

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Dr Hannibal Muhtar and Tanzanian groundnut breeder Dr. Omari Mponda

Naliendele means “eat when you are sleeping” in the local language of Southeast Tanzania. It is also the name of the community where you can find the Naliendele Agricultural Research Institute. According to local legend, a man had been traveling over long distances when he arrived to this community. He was very tired from his long journey. The people of the community gave him food and a place to sleep. The next day the man could not remember if he had eaten any food the previous day. He had been so tired from his journey that he could not remember. The people of the community said he ate while he was sleeping.

Naliendele ARI is an important site for research on cashew nut, groundnut, sesame, cassava and other crops.

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Dr. Hannibal Muhtar (center) of AGRICON International Inc. advises Dr. Samuel Gudu (right), the Deputy Vice Chancellor for Planning and Development of Moi University. They are considering how to design an irrigation system for a proposed agronomic trial site in Sega Western Kenya. Agricultural scientist Onkware Augustino (left) looks on.

As with any other endeavor, establishing an agronomic trial site requires substantial preparation. Planners must consider the homogeneity of fields with respect to soil and topographic conditions, fencing and security to protect the site from animals and intruders and how water can be accessed to provide irrigation.

Is there a weather station that will provide sufficient data to characterize the trials? Are there any pest and weed problems that could make carrying out experiments difficult? These are only a few of the considerations that must be taken into account.

Researchers with expertise in spatial analysis from CIATCIMMYTIITA and ICRISAT are working with the Generation Challenge Program (GCP) and others to evaluate new and existing cultivar trial sites. Our role is to analyze the location of the sites in the overall context of the GCP’s molecular breeding platform and other crop improvement programs.

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