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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/123456789/3987

Title: Effect of watering regime and cocoa pod husk on soil fertility and growth of hybrid cocoa seedlings in the semi - deciduous forest zone of Ghana
Authors: Mensah-Brako, Bismark
Issue Date: 15-Jun-2011
Abstract: The establishment and rehabilitation of smallholder cocoa farms, aimed at replacing over 42 % ageing and non productive stock using seedlings is limited by poor soil fertility and inadequate water application resulted in the less vigorous cocoa seedlings. The experiment was conducted in two planting seasons (November, 2010 and February, 2011) at Buako Cocoa Station in the semi-deciduous forest zone of Ghana to determine the effect of watering regime and cocoa pod husks on soil fertility and growth of hybrid cocoa seedlings in nursery using clone 42 and 85 to replace the old stock in the field. The experimental design used was factorial with three replications. The analysis showed that the soils in the study areas were sandy clay, deficient in magnesium, potassium, phosphorous, calcium and nitrogen which have the potential of negatively influencing the soil fertility status. Application of cocoa pod husks improved significantly (P<0.05) soil water holding capacity, soil organic matter content, magnesium, nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, hydrogen, calcium concentration and reduced soil bulk density. The study revealed that watering regimes II (0.18 l/seedling) and III (0.36 l/seedling) were the most effective treatments in improving leaf minerals and growth parameters of seedlings in both seasons and could be adopted as water requirement for hybrid cocoa seedlings. Leaf mineral concentrations in cocoa seedlings nursed in soil + cocoa pod husks composite increased significantly (P<0.05) compared to cocoa seedling nursed separately in only soil and cocoa pod husks. Also soil + cocoa pod husk composite influenced the plant height, leaf area, stem girth, number of leaves and root length growths compared to samples from cocoa pod husks and soil. Finally, results showed that statistically, there were no differences in leaf mineral and growth parameters among the seedlings nursed in the water sachets, COCOBOD, and IITA poly bags and that water sachets could be effectively adopted in raising hybrid cocoa seedlings up to five months.
Description: A thesis submitted to the Board of Postgraduate Studies, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of the Degree of Master of Science in Soil and Water Engineering, 2011
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/123456789/3987
Appears in Collections:College of Engineering

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