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Effect of mulch materials on soil physico-chemical properties and the performance of castor bean plant (Ricinus communis) in rivers state, Nigeria
 

DOI: 10.18805/IJARe.A-345    | Article Id: A-345 | Page : 649-654
Citation :- Effect of mulch materials on soil physico-chemical properties and the performance of castor bean plant (Ricinus communis) in rivers state, Nigeria.Indian Journal of Agricultural Research.2018.(52):649-654
O. A. Orji and I.P. Eke obianujuada@gmail.com
Address : Department of Crop/Soil Science, Rivers State University, P. M. B. 5080, Port Harcourt Nigeria.
Submitted Date : 4-03-2018
Accepted Date : 29-05-2018

Abstract

Mulches are known to conserve soil moisture, provide organic matter, protect soil and improve the soil as a growing environment. A field experiment was conducted to assess the effect of various mulch materials viz. dry oil palm bunch, saw dust and dry elephant grass at 25, 50 and 25 tons ha-1, respectively along with black plastic mulch on some soil physical and chemical properties and the performance of castor bean plant (Ricinus communis). All the mulches were applied to a mulch thickness of 5cm  in this study. Results showed that pH values, organic carbon content and total nitrogen were all significantly improved by mulching. Bulk density values were reduced to 1.10 - 1.18gcm-3 across all treatments, when compared to the control at 1.33gcm-3. At 6 WAP, plastic mulching increased number of leaves from 16 to 40 leaves per plant and capsule weight from 63.1 to 161.3g/plant; when compared with the control.

Keywords

Castor bean performance Mulching Soil properties.

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