Soil Moisture Distribution Pattern and Yield of Jute Mallow (corchorus olitorius) under Three Different Soil Fertility Management
Keywords: Corchorus olitorius, soil moisture, soil fertility, urea fertilizer, biomass yield, poultry manure
AbstractField experiment was conducted to determine the soil moisture distribution pattern and yield of Jute mallow (Corchorus olitorius) in a sandy clay loam soil of the tropical rain forest of Akure, Nigeria, under three different soil fertility management. The treatments were: zero fertilizer application plus rain fed condition (control); 1.79 ton ha-1 of poultry manure plus rain fed condition; 0.54 ton ha-1 of urea fertilizer application plus rain fed condition. The three treatments were replicated three times in a completely randomized block design. During the period of the plant development, the moisture content of the soil increases with increase in the depth of the soil. The highest mean value for the depth of the water stored occurred in the plots under urea treatment with value 9.243 ± 2.96 cm. Measured plant parameters showed the best Corchorus olitorius yield components in plots under urea treatment. The mean plant height at 6 weeks after planting (WAP) was 106.13 ± 5.55 cm, mean number of leaves at 7WAP was 54.90 ± 6.71, while the mean leaf area and leaf area index at 6WAP were 572.26 ± 7.53 mm2 and 0.16 ± 0.02, respectively. Biomass yield at 4 WAP was 1.99 ton ha-1 for plants in urea treated plots, 1.577 ton ha-1 under poultry manure and 1.445 ton ha-1 in the control experiment. There was no significant difference between the yields of the different treatment plots during the early stage of the plant development. The organic matter content was 2.1%, 2.15% and 2.25% in treatment plot under urea application, poultry manure and control experiment respectively. The nitrogen (N) content were 1.3%, 1.5% and 1.4% in treatment plots under urea, poultry manure plot and the control experiment respectively. Magnesium (Mg) content of treatment plots were 2.50 cmol kg-1, 2.65 cmol kg-1 and 2.70 cmol kg-1 in plots under urea, poultry manure and the control experiment, respectively. At 7 WAP, the total biomass yields were 6.78 ton ha-1, 5.58 ton ha-1 and 3.27 ton ha-1 for plants under urea and poultry manure application and control, respectively. The urea fertilizer and poultry manure applied, improved the chemical properties of the, soil which led to the significant increase in the biomass yield of the plant.