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Molecular Soil Biology 2014, Vol. 5, No. 7, 1-9
http://msb.biopublisher.ca
1
Research Report Open Access
Effect of Integrated Use of Soil Conditioner with Fertilizers on Growth,
Chlorophyll Content and Yield of Groundnut (
Arachis hypogea
L.)
Otitoloju Kekere
Department of Plant Science and Biotechnology, Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba Akoko, Ondo State Nigeria
Corresponding author email:
kekereekunnoi@yahoo.com
,
Molecular Soil Biology, 2014, Vol.5, No.7 doi: 10.5376/msb.2014.05.0007
Received: 31 May, 2014
Accepted: 29 Jun., 2014
Published: 08 Aug., 2014
© 2014 Kekere. This is an open access article published under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use,
distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Preferred citation for this article:
Kekere, 2014, Effect of Integrated Use of Soil Conditioner with Fertilizers on Growth, Chlorophyll Content and Yield of Groundnut (
Arachis hypogea
L.),
Molecular Soil Biology, Vol.5, No.7, 1-9
(doi: 10.5376/msb.2014.05.0007)
Abstract
A field experiment was conducted to investigate the interaction effect of soil conditioner with organic and inorganic
fertilizers on groundnut (
Arachis hypogaea
L.) production at the experimental farm of Plant Science and Biotechnology Department,
Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba Akoko, Ondo State, Nigeria. Treatments include: T
0
(no soil amendment), T
1
(100% inorganic
NPK fertilizer), T
2
(100% organic NPK fertilizer), T
3
(100% organic soil conditioner), T
4
(50% inorganic NPK + 50% organic soil
conditioner) and T
5
(50% organic NPK + 50% organic soil conditioner). T
1
-T
5
did not affect stem girth, leaf area and root length. T
1
and
T
2
significantly increased (p < 0.05) stem length, number of leaves and branches. T
4
and T
5
had the best growth, which differed
significantly from T
0
-T
3
. Root number and nodules increased significantly in amended soils. T
1
and T
2
increased relative growth rate
and root/shoot ratio non-significantly, but T
4
and T
5
increased them significantly. Leaf total chlorophyll and root mass was not affected
by T
1
-T
5
, while leaf mass significantly increased. Stem mass and total biomass increased significantly under T
1
and T
2
, while T
4
and T
5
further increased them remarkably above T
0
-T
3
. T
1
and T
2
significantly improved pods/plant, pod yield, number of seeds/plant and seed
yield, while T
4
and T
5
further enhanced yield. T
1
-T
5
significantly increased 100-seed mass while shelling percentage increase was
significant only in T
4
and T
5
. Growth and yield generally increased in T
3
but non-significant level. Sole application of soil conditioner,
organic or inorganic fertilizers though increased yield, none could provide soil conditions and nutrients for groundnut production, while
combination of soil conditioner with organic or inorganic fertilizer can greatly increase yield of groundnut for sustainable production.
Keywords
Soil amendment; Fertilizers; Soil conditioner;
Arachis hypogaea
; Growth
1 Introduction
Groundnut (
Arachis hypogaea
L.) is the 13
th
most
important food crop of the world, the world’s 4
th
most
important source of edible oil and 3rd most important
source of vegetable protein (FAO, 2004). Its seeds
contain high quality edible oil (50%), easily digestible
protein (25%) and carbohydrate (20%). It has a total
production of 36.1 million metric tons worldwide at
an average productivity of 1.4 metric tons/ha. Globally,
50% of groundnut produced is used for oil extraction,
37% for confectionery use and 12% for seed purpose.
Its haulms (vegetative plant part) also provide
excellent hay for feeding livestock (FAO, 2004). It is
grown in an area of about 26 million hectares in more
than 100 countries around the world under different
agro-climatic conditions, and Nigeria is one of the
major producing countries. Unfortunately, its area and
production have reduced greatly, fluctuating between
6.0~8.5 m ha and 6.0~9.5 million tonnes respectively,
largely caused by loss of soil fertility (FAO, 2004).
Farmers have long recognized the need to enhance soil
fertility through the use of fertilizers. High cost,
scarcity and late distribution of inorganic fertilizer
coupled with the need for organically produced foods
has directed the attention of farmers towards organic
sources (Gudugi, 2013). It is therefore necessary to
source for available, cheap and environmental friendly
materials that can be used solely or integrated for crop
production. Organic manures may increase soil
fertility and bring about improved crop production
potential. This is possibly by changes in soils physical
and chemical properties, including nutrient
bioavailability, soil structure, moisture retention,
cation exchange capacity, soil pH, microbial
community and activity, bulk density and aeration