Legume Cover Crops Research In Kenya: Experiences Of The Legume Research Network Project
Mureithi, Joseph G
Wamuongo, Jane W
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The Legume Research Network Project (LRNP) was started in 1994 (by then known as the Legume Screening Network) to evaluate suitable legume species for different agro-ecological environments and to subsequently incorporate the “best bets” into the existing farming systems. Initial Network activities included the screening of about 40 legume species, among them, green manuring species, food legumes and forage species. The screening trials were conducted in 11 sites across the country especially where soil infertility had been identified as a major constraint to crop production. The Network extended its activities to include research on legume residue management, integrated nutrient management, livestock feeding and cowpea screening trials. Each site had the task of bulking seeds of promising legume species. The Network members are from KARI, University of Nairobi (UoN), Environmental Action Team (EAT, an NGO based in Kitale) and Community Mobilisation Against Desertification (C-MAD, an NGO based in Rongo near Kisii). The main collaborators are the Ministry of Agriculture, and Rural Development staff, and the farmers from different regions of Kenya.