Influence of tithonia diversifolia,leafbiomass,n.p.kfertilizer,and poultry manure on the growth and yield of pepper (capsicum fructescens)

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Population growth and high demand of food has led to increases in the cultivated areas at the expense of restorative bush fallow. In the process, the resource base is depleted as many tropical soils are fragile, quickly losing organic matter and nutrients when intensively cultivated. Therefore there is an urgent need to replace this destructive cycle with economically and ecologically farming practices. It is justified that inorganic fertilizer has been responsible for sustained increases for food production. Organic inputs are needed to maintain the physical condition of soil (Hsieh and Hsieh, 1996). As soil fertility depletion is the single most important constraint to food security in Ghana there is the need to adopt practices that can help sustain crop production while maintaining sol fertility. The objective of the study was to find out the influence of Tithonia diversifolia, NPK fertilizer and poultry manure on the growth and yield of pepper. The treatments consisted of control, Tithonia diversifolia, NPK fertilizer and poultry manure. These were applied in sole applications as well as in varying combination of different treatment as shown in the table below. viii TREATMENT PLANT HEIGHT NUMBER OF BRANGHES NUMBER OF FRUITS/ PLANT WEIGHT OF FRUITS Tithonia only 35.2b 5d 8d 5.6d MPK Fertilizer only 33.9b 5d 8d 5.7d Poultry manure only 54.4a 7c 14c 7.9b Lithonia +Poultry manure 55.8a 8b 23ab 8.6ab Lithonia + NPK 50.2a 6d 21b 8.0bc NPK + Poultry manure 52.9a 9a 25a 8.7ab Control 20.8c 3e 5e 3.7e The treatment was replicated three times in a Randomized Complete Block Design. The results showed that all fertilization treatments significantly, enhanced pepper growth parameters and yield compared to control. ix It also showed that, poultry manure and its combinations were most significant (P< 0.05) for growth and yield. It was concluded that, the combination of Tithonia and poultry manure (8.6 ab) can be an alternative to NPK fertilizer + poultry manure (8.7 ab). However, there was high fertilizing potential of the combination of poultry manure and NPK fertilizer which ranked best method for high soil productivity and pepper yield.
A thesis submitted to the School of Post-Graduate Studies, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, in partial fulfilment of the requirement for the degree of Master of Science in Agroforestry,