Open Access Original Research Article

Growth and Yield Potential of Wild Blackberry (Rubus spp.) under Conventional Production Practices in Kenya

Omondi, Kenneth Ouma, Gesimba, R. Morwani, Wolukau, J. Ngwela

Journal of Experimental Agriculture International, Page 1-9
DOI: 10.9734/JEAI/2018/43981

Wild Blackberry (Rubus L. sub-genus Rubus Watson) species were evaluated for their growth and yield potential under conventional production practices at the Horticulture Research and Teaching Farm, Egerton University, Njoro, Kenya between January 2016 and July 2017. A randomized complete block design (RCBD) with three replications and five treatments (species) were used. The treatments included four wild blackberry species Rubus volkensisRubus steundneriRubus apetalusRubus pinnatus and one cultivar “Ruben” (Rubus fruiticosus). Growth and yield potential were determined by their respective components i.e. cane height, cane diameter, number of canes per plant emerging from ground, number of laterals per cane, lateral length, internode length, number of flowers per lateral and cane, fruit number per lateral, fruit size (length and width), fresh and dry fruit weight. Analysis of the data showed that wild species Rubus apetalus had the highest growth in terms of cane height (143.53 cm), cane diameter (19.37 mm), number of canes emerging from the ground (9 canes), number of flowers per lateral (58) and cane (581) and number of fruits per lateral (56), while Rubus pinnatus had the longest internodes of 8.47 cm and lateral length of 80.02 cm, however, R. volkensis was second to the cultivar “Ruben” (Rubus fruiticosus) in terms of, fruit size (length 22.84 mm and width 21.10 mm) and fruit fresh and dry weights of 3.7 vs 5.4 and 1.6 vs 2.4 g respectively. It is concluded that wild blackberry had growth and yield potential under conventional production practices. Adoption of Rubus volkensis under conventional production and the incorporation of growth vigour characteristics of wild species in breeding programs of the already cultivated species is recommended.

Open Access Original Research Article

Agronomic Performance of Banana Genotypes under Agroecological Management in the Semi-arid Region of Paraiba, Brazil

Marília Hortência Batista Silva Rodrigue, Oscar Mariano Hafle, Ednaldo Barbosa Pereira Junior, Valéria Fernandes de Oliveira Sousa, Francisco Edu de Andrade, Danielle Maria do Nascimento, Francisco Romário Andrade Figueiredo

Journal of Experimental Agriculture International, Page 1-10
DOI: 10.9734/JEAI/2018/44035

Introduction: Northeastern Brazil is a banana producing zone where the selection of banana tree genotypes has significantly increased crop productivity.

Aims: The study aimed to evaluate the agronomic performance of different banana-tree genotypes under agroecological management in northeastern Brazil.

Methodology: The experiment was conducted in the orchard of the Federal Institute of Education, Science and Technology of Paraíba following a randomized complete block design with nine treatments (banana tree genotypes) in four replications. Banana tree seedlings used as planting material were provided by Empresa Campo Biotecnologia. They were produced by micropropagation of plantlets. Cropping was handled following agroecological practices. Growth measurements and yield data regarding the the first crop cycle were recorded.

Results and Conclusions: Significant differences in yields and yield traits within banana-tree genotypes were observed. Prata Graúda and Grande Naine genotypes came out on top in terms of agronomic performance under agroecological practices.

Open Access Original Research Article

The Effects of a Biofertilizer Containing Growth-Promoting Bacteria on the Eggplant (Solanum melongena L.)

Victor Hugo de Farias Guedes, Diego Moura de Andrade Oliveira, Renato Lemos do Santos, Geíza Alves Azerêdo de Oliveira, Fernando Luiz Nunes de Oliveira

Journal of Experimental Agriculture International, Page 1-8
DOI: 10.9734/JEAI/2018/44045

The use of organic fertilisers in vegetable cultivation is important in the pursuit of increased production to improve the physical, chemical and biological characteristics of the soil, to promote plant growth, and to achieve economically viable productivity for farmers of small- and medium-sized farms. This study aimed to evaluate the development and productivity of eggplant after its fertilisation with a biofertiliser that was composed of sugar and alcohol waste and a bacteria growth promoter for plants. The Ciça genotype of eggplant plants werewas distributed in 20 pots with a capacity of 10 L for each pot. The experiment was conducted using a completely randomised design with four treatments and five repetitions. The following treatments were analysed: control (without any fertiliser), chemical fertiliser (NPK), manure and biofertiliser. The analysed parameters included height, stem diameter, weight and number of fruit. The treatments that received some type of fertiliser (chemical or organic) showed higher plant height, and the 'bio-fertiliser' treatment showed better results than the remaining treatments for all parameters. The results for growth in height, stem diameter and number of fruit demonstrated that eggplant adequately responded to fertilisation with biofertiliser in the experimental conditions and about the assessed conventional fertilisers.

Open Access Original Research Article

Qualitative Assessment of Early Palm Cladodes of Opuntia tuna L. (Mill) Grown with Organic Manures

Marcio Santos da Silva, Franciscleudo Bezerra Costa, Anderson dos Santos Formiga, Jackson Silva Nóbrega, Yasmin Lima Brasil, Renato Pereira de Lira, Jéssica Leite da Silva, Kátia Gomes da Silva, Giuliana Naiara Barros Sales, Ulisses dos Santos Pereira, Ana Marinho do Nascimento

Journal of Experimental Agriculture International, Page 1-14
DOI: 10.9734/JEAI/2018/44131

Objective: The objective was to evaluate the physical and chemical quality of young palm cladodes produced with different sources and concentrations of organic fertilisation.

Experimental Design: The experiment was conducted in a randomized block design, corresponding to five doses and three sources of organic fertilisation.

Place and Duration of the Study: The experiment was conducted in the Experimental Area of the Center for Agro-Food Science and Technology of the Universidade Federal de Campina Grande, Pombal campus, Paraíba, Brazil, between November 2016 through January 2017.

Methodology: The experiment was conducted in a 3 x 5 factorial block design, using 3 fertilisation sources (avian, bovine and caprine manure) and 5 doses (0, 5, 10, 15 and 20%). The seedlings were obtained from fully mature palm cladodes of the 'Elephant ear Prickly pear' (Opuntia tuna (L.) Mill.) cultivar.

Results: The fertilisation with bovine and caprine manure favoured the increase of fresh mass, thickness and transverse diameter characteristics of young palm cladodes. The application of avian manure promoted improvements in chemical attributes. 

Conclusion: The fertilisation with organic sources promoted improvements in the physical-chemical attributes of the young palm cladodes. The 10% dose promoted improvements in the physical parameters of shoots and palm. While the chemical attributes showed better with the dose of 5%.

Open Access Original Research Article

Use of Dimethylsulfoxide on the Postharvest Conservation and Quality of Strawberry and Peach

Shirlene Souza Oliveira, Maria Soraia Fortado Vera Cruz, Ana Carolina Pinguelli Ristau, Hannah Braz, Thatiane Nepomuceno Alves, Henrique Gusmão Alves Rocha, Gilberto Costa Braga, Vandeir Francisco Guimarães

Journal of Experimental Agriculture International, Page 1-10
DOI: 10.9734/JEAI/2018/44620

Objectives: The objective of this study was to assess, the effect of dimethylsulfoxide (1%, 4% and 7%) on the storage and postharvest quality of strawberry and peach.

Experimental: It was used a completely randomized design.

Location and Duration of Study: The experiment was conducted in the Laboratory of Food Technology, belonging to the State University of Western Paraná (UNIOESTE), Marechal Cândido Rondon, Paraná State, Brazil, in the period from November to December 2017.

Methodology: The fruits were treated by immersion in solutions of dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO) and stored (20°C and 62% RH) for 9 days. The sampling were done at intervals of 2 days for the analyses of fresh weight loss and degradation of fruit and every 3 days for firmness, total soluble solids, total titratable acidity, soluble solids/acidity and ascorbic acid.

Results: During storage 4% DMSO showed a significant effect (P< 0.01) in the reduction of the microbial degradation in strawberries at 20°C, however, had no effect on the loss of fresh weight and firmness. In peach, 1% DMSO accelerated softening and senescence of fruits causing further degradation. Total soluble solids of strawberries was not influenced by DMSO during storage, but peaches suffered the influence of DMSO on the 3rd day at 4% and 7%. Strawberries treated with 4% DMSO showed higher total acidity than the control at 3 and 9 days of storage. Strawberries treated with DMSO showed retention of ascorbic acid similar to or lower than the control, however, peaches showed lower contents of ascorbic acid until the 6th day of storage.

Conclusion: This study showed that DMSO was efficient in delaying the degradation of strawberry, but peach has not responded positively to application of DMSO under the same conditions of storage. In addition, DMSO was able to influence the total acidity in strawberries and peaches, however, caused retention of ascorbic acid only in peaches.