Enset (Ensete ventricosum (Welw.) Cheesman) kocho yield under different crop establishment methods as compared to yields of other carbohydrate-rich food crops


  • A. Tsegaye
  • P.C. Struik


<i>Ensete ventricoum</i>, kocho, fresh yield, dry matter yield, food security, fermentation


The kocho yield of enset, in terms of weight and energy, under different crop establishment methods, was investigated at Areka Research Centre, southern Ethiopia, and compared with the yields of other main starch crops grown in the country. The maximum fresh weights of kocho after fermentation from enset plants transplanted once (T1), twice (T2) or thrice (T3) were 25.9, 54.1 and 37.1 kg plant-1, respectively. When yield was expressed per unit of space and time, the maximum fresh yields of fermented kocho (70% moisture) from T1, T2 and T3 were 19, 33 and 26 tonnes ha-1 year-1, respectively. The kocho yield of enset per unit space and time, in terms of edible dry weight and energy, was much higher than the yields of any other crop cultivated in Ethiopia. Second to enset, the root and tuber crops also produced high yields of dry matter and energy. The cultivation of enset and root and tuber crops in densely populated areas under low input conditions can sustain the population better than that of other crops. Moreover, enset produces various byproducts and the prolonged presence of a closed canopy has an ecological advantage similar to that of forest.