CUMULATIVE EFFECT OF RICE STRAW ASH ON SOIL PHYSICOCHEMICAL PROPERTIES AND YIELD OF CUCUMBER
Publication Date : 26/04/2022
Physiochemical properties of soil remain an essential factor in agricultural production all over the world. This study was conducted to assess the cumulative effect of Rice Straw Ash (RSA) on soil physicochemical properties and a corresponding yield of cucumber. The experiment was conducted at the orchard of Faculty of Agriculture, Bayero University, Kano – Nigeria for two consecutive seasons. It consisted of four (4) treatment plots with 0 kg, 1 kg, 2 kg and 3 kg of RSA/m2 and replicated three times resulting to twelve plots. For each experimental plot, soil properties (moisture content (MC), porosity, bulk density (BD), electrical conductivity (EC), organic matter (OM), pH, sodium concentration (Na), nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), potassium (K), calcium (Ca) and magnesium (Mg)) were measured and analyzed before and after each season. The results revealed that application of RSA increases EC, OM, Na, porosity, and P but decreases pH, K, BD, Ca and Mg at the end of the first and second seasons. However, MC and concentration of N decreased in the first season and increased in the second season. This could be a result of the change in antecedent moisture level between the two experiments and variation of atmospheric nitrogen fixation by Nitrosamines and Nitrobacters respectively. The highest mean yield of cucumber was recorded in the control plot with 0 kg of RSA as 29.2 and 25.2 tons/ha during first and second seasons, respectively. Moreover, the ranges of cucumber yield obtained in the plots treated with RSA were 13.3 – 23.7 tons/ha and 11.1 – 18.5 tons/ha during the first and second seasons. The study concluded that cumulative use of RSA results in declination of the yield of cucumber crop due to increasing EC level. From this observation, farmers are advised to ditch from the application of RSA as an improver for soil fertility enrichment and other alternatives should be employed.
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