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Exploring farmer options for maize production strategies via scenario analysis using the APSIM model-an example of the approach

Author: Keating, B.
Author: Waddington, S.
Author: Shamudzarira, Z.
Author: Grace, P.
Author: Rohrbach, D.
Author: Snapp, S.S.
Author: Dimes, J.
Author: Carberry, P.S.
Author: Robertson, M.
Year: 2000
ISSN: 1665-045-X
Abstract: This report summarizes a workshop in which the APSIM (Agricultural Production Systems Simulator) farming systems model was applied to the analysis of management options critical to maize production in Zimbabwe. The modeling analysis focused on responses to investment in nitrogen fertilizer inputs, in terms of investments in timely sowing and weeding. The study evaluated a number of alternative scenarios of land, labor, and financial constraints for a farm household which were based on local information. Scenarios were established whereby the resources available could be deployed in different ways over multiple fields on the farm. In one scenario, fertilizer inputs, and weeding and plowing/sowing efforts were concentrated on a portion of the farm and the remainder was left idle. In another scenario, the resources were spread evenly over the whole farm; others involved the shifting of resources between investments in fertilizer inputs, early sowing, and more effective weeding regimes. The study was configured for a farm in Natural Region II using a Harare climate data on a shallow, infertile, sandy soil. Since the farm household constraints were very simply defined, the study needs to be repeated with more careful specification of the constraints and in other drier regions of the country. Despite these deficiencies, the study does highlight the challenges that smallholders face when investing in fertilizer inputs, and provides some direction for future on-farm research.
Format: PDF
Language: English
Publisher: CIMMYT
Serie: Risk Management Working Paper Series
Copyright: CIMMYT manages Intellectual Assets as International Public Goods. The user is free to download, print, store and share this work. In case you want to translate or create any other derivative work and share or distribute such translation/derivative work, please contact indicating the work you want to use and the kind of use you intend; CIMMYT will contact you with the suitable license for that purpose.
Type: Working Paper
Country focus: Zimbabwe
Place of Publication: Mexico
Pages: 12 pages
Serie Number: 00/02
Agrovoc: MAIZE

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  • Maize
    Maize breeding, phytopathology, entomology, physiology, quality, and biotech

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