Rate and time of phosphorus application on growth, n-fixation, seed yield of groundnut (Arachis hypogaea L.) and residue fertility on maize production

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MAY, 2015
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Two experiments were conducted at the Plantation Section of the Crop and Soil Sciences Department of the Faculty of Agriculture KNUST, during the major and minor seasons of 2014. The main objective was to determine the effect of rate and time of phosphorus application on growth, N-Fixation, seed yield of groundnut and residue fertility for maize production. The factorial experiment was laid out in a randomized complete block design with three replications. The factors were time and rate of phosphorus application. The fertilizer rates investigated were 0, 20, 40 and 60 kg/ha P and the time of application were fertilizer applied at planting time, one week after planting, two weeks after planting and three weeks after planting. The first experiment was conducted on the 15th May, 2014 and terminated on the 3rd September 2014. After harvesting the groundnut, all the haulms were put in their respective plots to fertilize the succeeding maize. The second experiment was conductedted on the 8th September, 2014 and crops harvested on the 4th December, 2014. The results in the first experiment showed that phosphorus fertilization significantly (P< 0.05) increased growth parameters, N-fixation, yield and its components of groundnuts. Phosphorus applied at the rate of 40 kg/ha resulted in greater seed yield of groundnuts. The control treatment effect was significantly (P< 0.05) lower than all other P-applied treatments. The study also showed that phosphorus applied treatments resulted in increase in haulm nitrogen. In the second experiment, the haulm incoporated treatments produced greater maize grain yield than the control treatment. Additionally, maize yield from the residue-incoporated treatments were comparable to yields obtainable by farmers when they apply inorganic fertilizer at the recommended rate. The results indicated that if farmers would incoporate all their legume haulms into the soil, application of inorganic fertilizer may not be necessary.
A Thesis submitted to the Department of Crop and Soil Sciences, Faculty of Agriculture, College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi Ghana. This is in partial fulfillment of the requirement for the award of Master of Philosophy Degree in Agronomy.