New early-maturing maize variety championed by RIU Rwanda
11 February 2011
Recent poor rains in Nyagatare District mean that access to early maturing maize varieties is crucial, especially during season B (starting in March - see note below).
ISAR, the Rwanda Agriculture Research Institute, has developed a new early maturing variety of maize, M081, for middle altitude areas such as Nyagatare District.
RIU Rwanda conducted demonstrations using this variety during the season A (starting in October 2010) in order to create more demand for season B 2011. Now RIU is about to launch a large-scale promotional campaign in collaboration with the RIU-supported Maize Innovation Platform
. 150 demonstration plots are being prepared and the associated communications and marketing campaign is targeting 12,000 farmers.
, Country Coordinator RIU Rwanda, said:
"The field days created a great deal of interest from the farmers in variety M081. The demonstration really put the maize to the test as season A in 2010 was particularly dry with very poor rains. We will report back later how successful we have been in moving farmers over to the new variety."
Rainfall in Rwanda is bimodal, that is, there are two rainy seasons. The "season A" rains start in October/November and continue through January affecting the harvest in February. The "season B" rains start in January-March and continue through May/June affecting the harvest in June/July.