Agriculture in Burkina Faso is largely dominated by 75% of rainfed crop production, which is characterized by short and unevenly distribution of annual rainfall. The shortage of water for crop production is not only a consequence of water scarcity,but also the mismatch between water supply and demand. The cropping calendar approach has been widely suggested as a strategy management to mitigate the water shortage to crop. This study introduces a new agriculture water management plan in two important areas; Banfora and Ouagadougou based onevapotranspiration reference model and rainfall contribution index. The results showed that Banfora has a higher agricultural potential than Ouagadougou, and also proposed a suitable cropping calendar under rainfed condition for the study areas. Furthermore, from the index estimated for Banfora, it is found that, after thefirst crop, the rainwater can possibly contribute 39.1 and 42.4% to the water requirements of maize and bean respectively while the plating date is September 1st. The new water management plan recommended for Burkina Faso in this study may increase agricultural production for solving part of the local food shortage problem.
Key words: Evapotranspiration, water scarcity, rainfed, cropping calendar,irrigation efficiency, food production.
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