Open Access Original Research Article

Effects of Cowpea Residues, Chicken Manure and Partially Acidulated Phosphate Rock on the Fertility of Two Acid Soils for Maize Production in Lusaka- Zambia

Miriam Nyau, Victor Shitumbanuma

Asian Journal of Soil Science and Plant Nutrition, Page 1-12
DOI: 10.9734/AJSSPN/2018/38647

Aim: To assess the use of chicken manure pellets, partially acidulated phosphate rock (PAPR) and cowpea residues to enhance the fertility and productivity of two Kandiustalfs in Zambia.

Methodology: Six treatments; chicken manure, PAPR, cowpea residues, chicken manure with PAPR, cowpea residues with PAPR and no amendment (control) were assigned to 4 m x 4 m plots on each soil. The PAPR was applied at a rate of 40 kg P2O5/ha, chicken manure at 20 kg N/ha and cowpea was planted in rows 45 cm apart. Cowpeas or weeds were allowed to grow on each plot for four months when cowpea pods matured. Plants were cut, incorporated into the soil and left to decompose for six weeks. Soil samples were then collected for analysis of organic matter, N, P, K and greenhouse maize trials.

Results: Cowpea residues, chicken manure and chicken manure with PAPR significantly increased levels of organic matter. Cowpea residues and cowpea residues with PAPR significantly increased levels of available N than the control. Available P levels significantly increased with application of cowpea residues and chicken manure with PAPR. Application of cowpea residues, cowpea residues with PAPR and chicken manure significantly increased levels of K than the control. Cowpea residues and cowpea residues with PAPR significantly increased maize dry matter yields than the control. The relative agronomic effectiveness (RAE) of cowpea residues was 66% on Chakunkula soil and 37% on Choma soil respectively.

Conclusion: Cowpea residues are potential means of improving the fertility and productivity of acidic Alfisols especially for resource poor farmers with limited access to chemical fertilizers.

Open Access Original Research Article

Response of Cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz) and Sesame (Sesamum indicum L.) to Different Levels of NPK Fertilizer Application in Cassava/Sesame Intercrop in Makurdi, Nigeria

J. A. Idoko, T. Iorlamen, E. E. Ameh

Asian Journal of Soil Science and Plant Nutrition, Page 1-10
DOI: 10.9734/AJSSPN/2018/40339

Field experiments was conducted during the 2014 and 2015 growing seasons at the Teaching and Research farm of the Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi to evaluate the response of cassava and sesame to different rates of fertilizer NPK 20:10:10 application under intercropping. The treatments consisted of factorial combinations of three levels of NPK 20:10:10 (0 kg/ha, 200 kg/ha, 400 kg/ha) and two cropping systems [sole cropping (cassava and sesame) and intercropping (cassava + sesame)] laid out in randomized complete block design (RCBD) with three replications. Sole cropping gave significantly higher plant height at harvest, number of leaves at harvest, number of branches at harvest, number of roots per plant, root diameter and root yield of cassava than intercropping. Fertilizer level at 400kg/ha gave significantly (P≤ 0.05) higher plant height at harvest, number of leaves at harvest, number of branches at harvest, number of roots per plant, root diameter and root yield of cassava than 200 and 0 kg/ha NPK 20:10:10 fertilizer respectively. Intercropping gave higher number of days to 50% flowering of sesame than sole cropping. However, sole cropping gave significantly higher plant height at harvest, number of leaves at harvest, number of branches at harvest; stem girth, number of capsules per plant, grain yield and 1000-seed weight of sesame than intercropping. Sesame yield and growth parameters increased with increase in NPK fertilizer application. All intercrop combinations had LER values above 1.0 indicating intercrop advantages. Therefore 400kg/ha NPK 20:10:10 should be recommended for cassava/sesame intercrops in Makurdi Location, Nigeria.

Open Access Original Research Article

Irrigation Suitability of Cheffa Valley Water Resources at Oromiya Special Zone in Ethiopia

Ali Seid, Muktar Mohammed, Seid Mohammed

Asian Journal of Soil Science and Plant Nutrition, Page 1-7
DOI: 10.9734/AJSSPN/2018/40577

To achieve sustainable irrigated agriculture in potential areas of the country better understanding of the extent, type and distribution of soluble salts are decisive for effective control of soil salinity and sodicity problems. In line with this, this study was conducted in Kemissie district, Oromiya Zone of Amhara Regional State in Cheffa Valley of North Ethiopia. This study focused on irrigation water characterisation and classification at Cheffa Valley concerning salinity and sodicity. Underground water samples from five profiles excavated on representative locations in different land use and two irrigation water samples from Borkena River were collected and analysed. The underground water samples were moderately alkaline in reaction and highly saline in salt content while the Borkena River water samples were mildly alkaline in reaction and moderate in salt content. The Cl- and HCO3- salts of Na+ and Ca2+ ions are mainly contributing salinity and sodicity hazard in both underground and River water samples.Underground waters were high in soluble salt content, medium in sodicity and safe in residual sodium carbonate hazard while Borkena river is medium insoluble salt content, low in sodicity and safe in residual sodium carbonate hazard. Accordingly, the current result revealed that Borkena River is potentially suitable for irrigation purpose while utilisation of underground waters for irrigation without treatment is aggravated salinity problem. Therefore, unless proper management practices were applied Soils of the area were prone to secondary salinisation.

Open Access Original Research Article

Effect of Planting Density on Production of Acacia Plantations in Northeast Vietnam

Tran Van Do, Dang Van Thuyet, Nguyen Toan Thang, Phung Dinh Trung, Ly Thi Thanh Huyen, Nguyen Thi Thu Phuong, Dang Hai Ha, Nguyen Van Tuan, Le Thi Hanh, Hoang Thi Nhung, Tran Hong Van

Asian Journal of Soil Science and Plant Nutrition, Page 1-5
DOI: 10.9734/AJSSPN/2018/41258

Acacia plantations have been contributing to national economic and livelihood of millions people living in rural areas of Vietnam. It has been widely planted and accounted for nearly 50% areas of plantations in Vietnam. In this study, different planting densities including 1,110 trees ha-1 (3 × 3 m), 1,330 trees ha-1 (2.5 × 3 m), and 1,660 trees ha-1 (2.5 × 2.5 m) were tested for Acacia hybrid and Acacia auriculiformis. The growth parameters (diameter at breath height/DBH and stem height/H) were measured, and dry biomass was estimated for 4-year-old plantations. The results indicated that a 4-year-old plantation of A. hybrid had most massive DBH (11.3 cm) at planting density of 1,100 tree ha-1, while highest dry biomass (57.9 Mg ha-1) was observed in planting density of 1,660 trees ha-1. In case of a 4-year-old plantation of A. auriculiformis, highest DBH (10.0 cm) and highest dry biomass (50.4 Mg ha-1) at planting density of 1,330 trees ha-1 were recorded. At the planting densities of 1,110 trees ha-1 and 1,660 trees ha-1, a 4-year-old plantation of A. hybrid had significantly higher dry biomass as compared to that of a 4-year-old plantation of A. auriculiformis. However, the difference of dry biomass between 4-year-old plantations of two species at planting density of 1,330 trees ha-1 was not significant. This study concluded that to grow A. hybrid planting density of 1,660 trees ha-1 should be used, while density of 1,330 trees ha-1 is encouraged for planting A. auriculiformis for pulpwood production.

Open Access Original Research Article

Geostatistical Evaluation of Spatial Variability of Selected Soil Physical Properties under Different Crops in Ado Ekiti, Nigeria

G. O. Awe, O. O. Nurudeen, A. A. Amiola, G. D. Ojeniyi, T. B. Tutuola

Asian Journal of Soil Science and Plant Nutrition, Page 1-16
DOI: 10.9734/AJSSPN/2018/41181

The characterization of spatial variability of soil physical and chemical characteristics is very important for precision farming and managing agricultural production. Therefore, the objective of this study was to evaluate the spatial variability of selected physical properties of a soil under different crops in Ado Ekiti, Nigeria using descriptive statistics and geostatistical techniques. Grids of 10 m x 10 m were set up on the field within three land uses. The field was about 3 hectares, out of which 1ha was apportioned for cowpea, 1ha was for sole maize and the rest for maize/cassava intercrop. A total of one hundred and eighty-four (184) georeferenced surface samples were collected for analysis of texture, bulk density (BD), particle density (Pd), porosity (Pt) and saturated hydraulic conductivity (Ks). The study used descriptive statistics to investigate the striking features in each soil property and further adopted semi-variogram and kriged maps to assess the spatial dependence and classification of the soil properties respectively. The soil properties showed varying degrees of spatial variability, with Ks highly variable (118%) than others. There was weak correlation between Ks versus BD (12%) and Pt (-14%) but the correlation was significant with sand content (22%). The mean value of bulk density was 1.43 g cm-3 while the hydraulic conductivity (Ks) was averaged 48.74 cm hr-1. From the variogram, the range values for sand and clay was about 14 m while it was 510 m for bulk density, total porosity and particle density and about 411 m for Ks. The range of spatial dependence values indicated that future sampling could be done within a distance between 14 and 510 m. The semi-variogram revealed sand and clay having strong spatial dependence, Ks having moderate spatial dependence whereas others showed weak spatial dependence structure. The kriged maps further showed the spatial distributions of these soil physical properties across the three different land use systems. As the measured soil physical properties is shown to vary in space and exhibited random spatial patterns, the study suggested that the field could be susceptible to erosion since it is dominated by high bulk density, high sand content, hydraulic conductivity and subsequently low porosity.