Open Access Original Research Article

Efficacy of Different Tillage and Weed Management Practices on Phenology and Yield of Winter Maize (Zea mays L.) in Chitwan, Nepal

Sujeeta Sharma, Santosh Marahattha, Shrawan Kumar Sah, Tika Bahadur Karki

International Journal of Plant & Soil Science, Page 1-11
DOI: 10.9734/IJPSS/2018/44398

A field research trial at experimental station of National Maize Research Program (NMRP), Rampur, Chitwan, Nepal during winter 2015/16 was conducted to study the effects of different tillage and weed management practices on yield and yield attributing characters of winter maize (Zea mays L.). The experiment was laid out in split plot design with two tillage methods (no tillage and conventional tillage) as main plot factor and seven weed management practices as sub plot factor (sequential application of atrazine 0.75 a.i. kg/ha fb 2,4-D at 1.5 kg/ha; pre-emergence tank mix application of atrazine at 0.75 kg/ha and glyphosate at 2.5 ml/Lit. of water; pre-emergence tank mix application of atrazine at 0.75 kg/ha and pendimethalin at the rate 2 ml/L of water; cowpea co-culture; black polythene mulch, weed free and weedy check). From the study the highest grain yield (7.07 t/ha) was obtained from black polythene mulch which was statistically similar to weed free check (5.91 t/ha). Other weed management practices produced an intermediate yield between black polythene mulch and weedy check which produced the lowest grain yield (3.16 t/ha). Also, tillage methods significantly influence the harvest index, significantly higher harvest index was found in no tillage (46.49%) as compared to conventional tillage practices (42.12%).

Open Access Original Research Article

Assessment of the Mineralization of Composts and the Availability of the Fertilizing Elements in Two Soils in Niger

Mella Mamane Tchikama, Zanguina Adamou, Addam Kiari Saidou, Chollani Bilalo Souleymane

International Journal of Plant & Soil Science, Page 1-8
DOI: 10.9734/IJPSS/2018/46006

The work aims to study the mineralization of compost in soils and the availability of the fertilizing elements to plants. A silty sandy soil S1 and a sandy soil S2 have been used to study the elaborated compost mineralization. Soils-compost mixture (100:1) are incubated to 2/3 the humidity of field capacity during 30 days to follow-up the mineralization of the organic matter and during 30 days for the availability of soil fertilizing elements and the temperature to 28°C. Results in a first incubation showed curve of mineralization a slope at beginning and offers to be constant after 20 to 30 days of incubation. Then, the incorporation of compost to soils, leads to an increase of the mineral nitrogen of soil at the end of 28 days of incubation. The analysis of the physico-chemical parameters from the beginning to the end of the incubation, revealed an increase of the content in available phosphorus of 120.6 mg/kg for S1C, and 128.4 mg/kg for S2C. The content of the assimilated phosphorus in soils (control) is 10, 65 mg/kg for S1 and 9, 21 mg/kg for S2. The contents in assimilated phosphorus didn't vary meaningfully during 28 days in soils without composts. During this incubation, the values of pH for the control soil are lower than those of mixture soils + compost; the pH at the end of the incubation period is lower compared to one at the beginning. This organic contribution improved the cation- exchange capacity of soils of more than 96.33% for the treatments with S2C and more than 92.24% with S1C. The sum of the three cations (K+, Ca2+, Mg2+) measured out is higher in treated soils with compost than soils without compost.

Open Access Original Research Article

Agronomic and Economic Performance of Hot Pepper (Capsicum annuum L.) in Response to Blended Fertilizer Supply at Asossa, Western Ethiopia

Nimona Fufa, Girma Abera, Edossa Etissa

International Journal of Plant & Soil Science, Page 1-11
DOI: 10.9734/IJPSS/2018/46132

Hot pepper production is constrained by declining soil fertility and poor management practices in Assosa area, western Ethiopia. An experiment was conducted at Assosa Agricultural Research Center, during 2017/18 cropping season to evaluate different rates of blended fertilizers on agronomic performance and pod yield, and economic profitability of hot pepper production. The treatments included were: control, recommended NP, three rates for each NPSB and NPSBZn (100, 150, 200 kg ha-1) arranged in a randomized complete block design, with three replications. In the blends since N proportion was low, supplementary N was applied from Urea to optimize N needs of the crop. The result of the study revealed that the growth parameters (plant height and number of branches), yield components (number of pod per plant, pod length and width) and marketable pod yield were significantly (p<0.05) affected by fertilizer rates and types. The marketable dry pod yield was improved by 134.7% with the application of 150 kg NPSBZn + 44 kg ha-1 N as compared to the control. Moreover, this treatment generated the highest net benefit of 168,070 ETB ha-1 with 5365% marginal rate of return (MRR). Nevertheless, application of 100 kg NPSBZn + 29 kg N ha-1 had also resulted in 57% pod yield improvement, 8444% MRR, and net benefit of 138,316 ETB ha-1. In general, all blended fertilizer rates applied were superior over the recommended NP and the control implying that S, B and Zn added with blends might be deficient in Assosa area for crop production. Therefore, these two rates (150 kg NPSBZn + 44 kg N ha-1 and 100 kg NPSBZn + 29 kg N ha-1) can be recommended for profitable hot pepper production in Assosa area as an alternative for the poor and wealthy groups of farmers.

Open Access Original Research Article

Geostatistical Assessment of the Spatial Variability of Acid Soils Properties in the Southeastern Highlands, Arsi Zone, Ethiopia

Dawit Habte Haile, Fassil Kebede, Bobe Bedadi, Lemma Wogi

International Journal of Plant & Soil Science, Page 1-11
DOI: 10.9734/IJPSS/2018/46494

This research was conducted with the objective of generating quantified information on the spatial variability of soil properties and apply them to improve the planning and management of acid soils in the highlands of Arsi zone, Ethiopia. In this research, the spatial variability of soil pH-H2O, pH-K, percent organic carbon (% OC), cation exchange capacity (CEC), exchangeable acidity, and exchangeable aluminum is studied. Four kriging and 3 deterministic interpolation methods were evaluated for their prediction accuracy. Hence, Ordinary Kriging (OK) and Empirical Bayesian Kriging (EBK) were found to be superior for prediction of pH-H2O and pH-K; while Universal Kriging (UK) for CEC and % OC; and UK and Local Polynomial Interpolation (LPI) for exchangeable acidity and exchangeable aluminum. Finally, OK was applied for analysis and interpretation of pH-H2O and pH-K; UK for CEC, % OC, exchangeable acidity and exchangeable aluminium. Soils in the range of pH-H2O:4.49-5.3 cover about 82% of the total area. About 56% have pH-H2O less than 5.1 and CEC values between 2.96 and 20.01 meq/100 g. Generally, the CEC varied from 2.96 in the very strongly acidic to 37.1 meq/100 g soil. The % OC content is generally good, and varied with altitudinal gradations. Exchangeable acidity varied from 0.1–4.28 meq/100 g. Kriging interpolation based on the data range of 0.1 - 2.4 meq/100 g showed that 68% of the total area has exchangeable acidity greater than 0.5 meq/100 g. These results are found to be very useful for improving research and development planning, management, and evaluation of the effectiveness of measures to be taken to address productivity problems on the studied area.

Open Access Original Research Article

Effect of Graded Levels of Major Nutrients and Biofertilizers on Yield, Nutrient Content and Uptake of Safflower Growing in Vertisol

Baburao A. Patil, Sagar N. Ingle, V. D. Guldekar

International Journal of Plant & Soil Science, Page 1-6
DOI: 10.9734/IJPSS/2018/46223

Effect of graded levels of major nutrients and biofertilizers on yield, nutrient content and  nutrient uptake of safflower growing  in vertisols was investigated in field experiment carried out on clayey soil at College of Agriculture, Nagpur during rabi season using variety AKS/S-41 in 2011-12. The experiment was conducted in a Randomized Block Design (RBD) with three (3) replications and nine (9) treatments. N and P fertilizers each at 40 kg ha-1 were applied. The sources of N and P were urea and single super phosphate. The results of the study showed that yield,  nutrient content and uptake N, P, K, parameters of safflower were significantly found highest in the treatment of RDF alone or in combination with Azospirillum + PSB. The seed and straw yield of safflower was also significantly highest in the same treatments.  It is concluded that combination of biofertilizer and major fertilizers significantly improved the yield, nutrient content and uptake of safflower.