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Articles by Mwenje Eddie
Total Records ( 3 ) for Mwenje Eddie
  Mandumbu Ronald , Mutengwa Charles , Mabasa Stanford and Mwenje Eddie
  Background and Objective: Resistance through reduced strigolactones is one of the sustainable ways of managing Striga asiatica. To verify the existence of reduced strigolactone production in sorghum genotypes, an agar jel assay was carried out on seven sorghum bicolor lines and one Sorghum arundinaceaum sourced in Zimbabwe. Methodology: In the first experiment, pre-germinated Striga seeds were pipetted into a Petri dish with drying agar jel and pre-germinated sorghum seedlings were grown across the Petri dish. The eight sorghum genotypes were also grown in a sand culture and the number of Striga that attached were recorded. Results: The results indicated that sorghum genotypes varied significantly (p<0.05) with respect to maximum germination distance (Mgd) with wild sorghum and SC sila having the largest mgds indicating that they produced the largest quantities of strigolactones. The genotypes Mukadziusaende had the highest tiller numbers while SC sila had the lowest. Striga counts were highest on Wild Sorghum, Ruzangwaya and Hlubi. There was a negative correlation between mgd and tiller number showing that the highest strigolactone producers had low tiller numbers. A correlation coefficient of 0.564 between mgd and Striga counts showed that as Strigolactones increase Striga counts also increase. Conclusion: It can therefore be concluded that resistance through reduced strigolactones was found in the sorghum genotype Mukadziusaende. The direct relationship between mgd means that tiller number can be used to select for reduced strigolactone production in the field.
  Mandumbu Ronald , Mutengwa Charles , Mabasa Stanford and Mwenje Eddie
  Background and Objective: Sorghum production is hampered by the parasite Striga asiatica and the recurring droughts due to climate change. However, the morphological and physiological effects of these two stresses are poorly understood. The aim of this study was to determine the effects of both abiotic and biotic factors occurring simultaneously on sorghum productivity. Methodology: Two pot experiments were set up to determine the effects of the two factors on the morpho-physiological traits of sorghum genotypes. A 2×2×5 factorial experiment laid down as a completely randomized design replicated 3 times was carried out twice at Bindura University of Science Education (BUSE) nursery. The first factor was water availability at two levels: 50 and 100% of Field Capacity (FC). Striga asiatica infestation was the second factor at two levels: Infested and uninfested and the third factor was sorghum genotypes at five levels. Sorghum chlorophyll content, Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) and dry matter traits were analyzed using Genstat version 14 to compare treatments effects. Results: Watering at 100% FC gave the higher (p<0.01) NDVI across all the measured period. The results indicated that sorghum genotypes differed (p<0.05) sharply with respect to chlorophyll content and the NDVI with the genotype Mukadziusaende having the most chlorophyll and NDVI (p<0.05), whilst the least was wild sorghum. Generally, Striga infestation did not lower chlorophyll content when it co-occurred with drought stress. The chlorophyll content of genotypes Mukadziusaende, wild sorghum and Chiredhi was not significantly reduced by limited water availability. Mukadziusaende had the highest (p<0.05) head weight and head index. Infestation with Striga significantly reduced (p<0.05) head weight. Conclusion: Drought stress and Striga infestation had mutually exclusive effects on chlorophyll content and NDVI. However, both infestation and drought stress reduced head weight illustrating the two factors were synergistic on their effects on sorghum head weight.
  Mandumbu Ronald , Mutengwa Charles , Mabasa Stanford and Mwenje Eddie
  Striga is a major parasitic weedy species in Southern Africa and is an impediment to attainment of household food security for poorly resourced communal farmers. The objective of this study was to use future niche descriptions and the life stages of Striga to predict the Striga epidemic in the future. Climate change projections through time scale analysis, general circulation models (GCM) down scaling and dynamical down scaling were used to predict the likely scenario in relation to the Striga epidemic. Agricultural systems are expected to face an increasing risk of erosion, runoff and soil degradation. Alternating high temperatures and rainfall may assist breaking of dormancy in Striga whilst severe winds greatly aid dispersal of the weed seeds. Generally production of strigolactones, haustorial initiation factors, attachments, seed production and dispersal were expected to increase as temperature rises like other biological processes. From this study it can be concluded that the Striga epidemic is going to increase under the new climate. The parasitic weed is likely going to become a more serious threat to crop production.
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