To effectively discharge its mandate and therefore address the needs of its clientele, Katumani has 4 sub-centers and numerous experimental sites across its mandate sub-Counties. The sub-centers are


Ithookwe is in Kitui County, sub-County of Kitui-Central; 105 km from Machakos. It stands on 7 ha of land in warm-mid wet environment. The soil is clay loam. It has mild well-terraced plots. The key partner is CIMMYT. Main work here are evaluation of legumes, cereals and Brachiaria pasture forages.



Kampi ya Mawe

The sub-Centre is on 450 ha in Makueni County, Wote; 75 km from Katumani. The environment is warm-dry conditions where the soil is loam sand, of bimodal rainfall pattern. The major partner is ICRISAT which develops and evaluates pigeonpea, sorghum and millets. Both mungbean and cowpea crop varieties are evaluated in the sub-Centre for the marginal areas. KEPHIS has Kampi-ya-Mawe as one of the crop variety testing sites.



(2.15 S, 37.75 E) is in Makueni County, Makindu sub-County (Kibwezi West) on the Nairobi-Mombasa Highway at an altitude of 975 m; 102 km from Machakos Town. It stands on 50 ha hived from ARLRI. It is in a riverine area with all-season irrigation facility. It experiences two rainfall seasons. The main one occurs from October to December and the minor one from March to May with annual rainfall of 530 mm. The soil types range from sandy clay to clay. The temperatures range from 14.3 (minimum) to 35.1 (maximum).

It plays a pivotal role in the dryland crops breeding and seed multiplication agenda. It serves as a variety testing and seed bulking site due to its all-year-round irrigation facilities. Activities at the sub-centre include:

  • Maize breeding for drought tolerance, pest and disease resistance and low nitrogen varieties 
  • Sorghum and millets breeding
  • Grain legumes breeding and variety evaluation
  • Seed bulking seedling propagation
  • Marker assisted breeding in maize and sorghum

These activities are jointly carried out by CIMMYT, ICRISAT, CIAT, KEPHIS and UoN.


Masongaleni is in Makueni County, East Kibwezi sub-County, 172 km from Katumani in a hot-dry environment. It stands on 690 ha with irrigation facility. The soil is sandy loam. It has been used for crop variety experimental trials by both KALRO and partners like ICRISAT and KEPHIS. Crop varied yield evaluation of legumes and cereals in low moisture conditions have been the main factor under evaluation.