Open Access Original Research Article

Influence of Poultry Manure and NPK Fertilization on Growth, Yield and Storability of Onion (Allium cepa L.) Grown Under Rain-fed Conditions

Harrison Kwame Dapaah, Judith Grace Amoh-Koranteng, Kwabena Darkwah, Eliezer Bortei Borketey-La

Journal of Experimental Agriculture International, Page 866-878
DOI: 10.9734/AJEA/2014/7526

Aim: To evaluate the growth, yield and storability response of two onion varieties to different levels of poultry manure and NPK fertilizer application.
Study Design: The design used was a 2 x 5 factorial arranged in a Randomized Complete Block Design (RCBD) with four replications.
Place and Duration of Study: Field experiments were conducted at the University of Education, Winneba, Mampong-Ashanti campus research fields from October 2009 to February 2010 and March to July 2010.
Methodology: Two onion varieties (Bawku Red and Texas Grano) and five soil amendments (10 t ha-1poultry manure (PM); 15 t ha-1 PM; 20 t ha-1PM; 450 kg/ha NPK fertilizer and no fertilizer) were studied.
Results: The results showed that, on the average, Texas Grano produced higher number of leaves per plant, plant height, total dry biomass, bulb dry biomass, mean bulb weight, bulb diameter and 40-72% greater fresh bulb yield than Bawku Red in both seasons. The soil amendments also had higher number of leaves per plant, 43-83%, 38-90%, 40%, 42-63% and 13-73% greater total dry biomass, dry bulb biomass, mean bulb weight, bulb diameter and fresh bulb yield, respectively, than the control. On the average, the PM treatments produced 7-60% higher fresh bulb yield than the NPK treatment. The Bawku Red variety had lower percentage sprouted and rotten bulbs than Texas Grano, while the control unfertilized check onions stored better than the soil amended treatments. There was no difference between storing onions on the bare concreted floor and in a cane basket.
Conclusion: Growing Bawku Red with application of 10 t ha-1PM or 450 kg ha-1 NPK and Texas Grano with application of 15-20 t ha-1PM are recommended for possible adoption by farmers or further testing on-farm in the transition agro-ecological zone or similar environments.

Open Access Original Research Article

Comparative Efficacy of Phytopesticides in the Management of Podagrica spp and Mosaic Disease on Okra (Abelmoschus esculentus L.)

Elvis Asare-Bediako, Albert Addo-Quaye, Appiah Bi-Kusi

Journal of Experimental Agriculture International, Page 879-889
DOI: 10.9734/AJEA/2014/8109

Aims: To evaluate the effectiveness of different aqueous plant extracts on the management of flea beetles (Podagrica spp) and mosaic disease on okra
Study Design: The treatments applied were 10% (w/v) crude extract each of neem leaf, garlic, mahogany bark, chili pepper fruit, pawpaw leaf, bougainvillea leaf and the control (water), laid out in a Randomized Complete Block Design with four replications
Place and Duration of Study: School of Agriculture Teaching and Research Farm, University of Cape Coast, Ghana during the 2012 crop season.
Methodology: The treatments were applied weekly starting 21 days after sowing. Data was taken on the population of Podagrica species, severity of pest damage, incidence and severity of okra mosaic disease. Data was subjected to analysis of variance and means separated with least significant difference.
Results: All the phytopesticides significantly reduced the flea beetle populations and the corresponding pest damage on the okra plants than the control (P=0.05). However, neem leaf and garlic extracts were significantly better than the other phytopesticides in reducing the pest population and the pest damage (P=0.05) resulting in the highest fruit yield. Incidence and severity of the okra mosaic disease were significantly kept under control by the neem, garlic and bougainvillea extracts as compared to the other treatments. Population of the flea beetle was positively and significantly correlated with pest damage (r=0.821; P=0.05), and severity of okra mosaic disease (r=0.786; P=0.05) but negatively correlated with fruit yield (r=-0.750; P=0.05). Fruit yield was also negatively and highly correlated with pest damage (r=-0.857; P=0.05) and the severity of okra mosaic disease (r=-0.821; P=0.05).
Conclusion: Neem leaf and garlic extracts were effective in reducing flea beetle infestation and okra mosaic disease infection, resulting in high fruit yield in okra.

Open Access Original Research Article

Nitrogen Fertilization of Olive Orchards under Rainfed Mediterranean Conditions

Karima Bouhafa, Lhoussaine Moughli, Khadija Bouchoufi, Ahmed Douaik, Khalid Daoui Daoui

Journal of Experimental Agriculture International, Page 890-901
DOI: 10.9734/AJEA/2014/8719

Aims: This work has the objective of studying the effect of nitrogen fertilization on olive yield, oil content and quality.

Study Design: Randomized complete block design with four nitrogen fertilizer treatments and eight replications. Each individual plot consisted of four trees.

Place and Duration of Study: The experiment was conducted during 2011 in farmers’ fields at three sites: Taza (S1), Taounate (S2) and Taoujdat (S3) in Morocco.

Methodology: Four nitrogen rates (0.00, 0.25, 0.50 and 1.00 kg N per tree) were applied to the varieties Moroccan Picholine (S1 and S2) and Arbequina (S3). Nitrogen was split into two contributions: half in March and half in May. Phosphorus (0.50 kg P2O5 per tree) and potassium (2.00 kg K2O per tree) were applied in March.

Result and Discussion: At S2 (35 years old trees), nitrogen fertilizer improved yield, yield efficiency and olive oil content. At S1 (9 years old trees) and S3 (7 years old trees), nitrogen applications had no effect on the olive yield and negatively affected the olive oil quality in particular in S3.

Conclusion: The effect of nitrogen fertilization on olive yield was dependent of the olive orchard, some trees responded to applied N and others did not. It should be noted that these results are preliminary due to the short duration of the experiment.

Open Access Original Research Article

Assessment of the Growth Responses of Sesame (Sesamum indicum l.) and False Sesame (Ceratotheca sesamoides Endl.) to Colchicine Treatments

S. Nura, A. K. Adamu, S. Mu’Azu, D. B. Dangora, K. Shehu, F. M. Mahamud, K. Mansur

Journal of Experimental Agriculture International, Page 902-912
DOI: 10.9734/AJEA/2014/6480

Aim: The aim of this study was to assess the responses of sesame and false sesame to different colchicine concentrations in order to determine the concentration(s) that could be best utilized in the genetic improvement of the plants.
Study Design: The treated seeds were sown in a plot with three blocks in a randomized complete block design (RCBD) with three replications in a factorial arrangement for two mutant generations (M0 and M1).
Place and Duration of Study: The study was conducted at the Botanical Garden of the Department of Biological Sciences, Ahmadu Bello University Zaria, Nigeria in 2006 and 2007 growing seasons.
Methodology: The seeds of sesame and false sesame were treated with five different colchicine concentrations (0.1mM, 0.5mM, 1.0mM, 2.0mM and 0.0mM as control ) for two mutant generations (M0 and M1). Data collected included germination percents (14 DAS), root length, height at maturity, number of leaves/plant, leaf area, internodes length, 1000 seeds weight and dry weight.
Results: The results obtained showed highly significant difference (P≤0.01) in the effects of the mutagen on the germination percents, root length, height at maturity, leaf area, internodes length, 1000 seeds weight and dry weight in almost all the mutant generations except in the number of leaves/plant of the M1 where the effect is significant (P=.05). The effect of the mutagen is concentration dependent, decreases with increase in concentration).The result shows that 0.1mM colchicines concentration produced mutants with high rate of germination that are tall in stature. More so, the mutants produced high number of leaves that are larger in size and which are far distant apart; with higher seed and dry weight.
Conclusion: 0.1mM colchicine concentration was found to be more effective in the genetic improvement of sesame and false sesame growth parameters. The response of sesame to the mutagen was found to be the best.

Open Access Original Research Article

Modern Farming Technologies: Impact on Farm Productivity and Food Security in the Rice Terraces of the Cordillera Region, Northern Philippines

Robert T. Ngidlo

Journal of Experimental Agriculture International, Page 913-921
DOI: 10.9734/AJEA/2014/9202

The study assessed the impact of modern farming technologies on the productivity and food security in the rice terraces. The study covered four rice terraces clusters located in four provinces in the Cordillera region in the northern central part of the Philippines. The sites covered were: Haliap, Asipulo, Ifugao, Bagumbayan, Tabuk City in the province of Kalinga, Tanglagan, Calanasan, Apayao and Natonin, Mt. Province. The study is a part of a bigger project conducted for 24 months from January 2011 to December 2013. The study employed the Case Study method using 10 key informants supported by interviews, workshops and Focus Group Discussion. The results showed that one of the study sites still adhered to the traditional system of farming while three had already shifted to modern farming technologies. The three modern farming technologies adopted by farmers are: use of modern rice varieties as a substitute to the traditional varieties, use of fertilizers and pesticides and the use of hand tractors. Modern rice varieties improved rice production by 70% from the current yield of traditional rice varieties. Increase in yield created a fit between cash and subsistence wherein added produce improved food security and the surplus is sold to the local market for cash. However, the contemporary increase in yield is still not enough to cater to income and food security. The inevitable use of commercial inorganic fertilizers associated with modern rice varieties altered soil quality in the rice paddies. Soil is obviously sick with declining pH range. Although farmers have been using pesticides in the terraces, soil and water are still free from pesticide residues.

Open Access Original Research Article

Impact of Nitrogen on Cotton Growth, Lint Yield, Fiber Quality and Verticillium Wilt

C. R. Albers, J. E. Woodward

Journal of Experimental Agriculture International, Page 922-938
DOI: 10.9734/AJEA/2014/8919

Aim: To examine the response of cotton varieties with varying reactions to Verticillium dahliae to nitrogen.
Study Design: The experimental design was a randomized complete block in a split-plot arrangement with four replications. Nitrogen rate served as whole plots and cotton variety as sub-plot.
Locations: Trials were conducted at the Texas Tech University New Deal and Quaker Farms in Lubbock, County (2011 and 2012), and the Texas A&M AgriLife Research Halfway Farm in Hale County (1 trial in 2011 and 2 trials in 2012).
Methodology: Plots measured 4.1 m wide (four rows on a 1.2-m spacing) by 10.6 m long. Composite soil samples were collected from four depths to determine nitrogen concentrations and fungal populations. Nitrogen treatments were applied prior to bloom. Plant growth, disease incidence, lint yield and fiber quality were used to compare treatments.
Results: Overall, the application of nitrogen had little affect on cotton growth. Appreciable levels of disease were only observed in one trial. The application of nitrogen slightly increased disease incidence; however, a two-fold increase in disease was observed in susceptible versus partially resistant varieties. Lint yields were only increased with the application of nitrogen in 2011. Subtle differences in fiber quality were observed between nitrogen rates, while varietal effects were observed for most all parameters. The fungus was recovered from the entire soil profile with fewer propagates found in the upper layer. Residual nitrate nitrogen increased over the two years and concentrations were highest in the uppermost layer.
Conclusion: Although confounded by adverse environmental conditions, these studies suggest that interactions between V. dahliae and nitrogen may exist. Furthermore, variety selection and the vertical distribution of the fungus may affect disease development. Additional studies are needed under more conducive conditions to better understand the interactions between these factors.

Open Access Original Research Article

Assessment of Genetic Variability within the Genus Citrus in Syria Using SSR Markers

Rima Al-Mouei, Wafaa Choumane

Journal of Experimental Agriculture International, Page 939-950
DOI: 10.9734/AJEA/2014/8682

Aims: The characterization and the estimation of genetic variability between accessions belonging to Citrusgenus using the SSR markers.
Place and Duration of Study: Laboratory of Molecular Genetic, Faculty of Agriculture, Tishreen University, Lattakia, Syria, between August 2011 to March 2013.
Methodology: 114 samples representing 4 groups of Citrus, obtained from the Department of CitrusResearch in Tartous, Syria, were used in this study. DNA was extracted from young leaves and analyzed with 26 SSR primer pairs.
Results: Six primers produced monomorphic alleles, and the other 20 primers produced 95 different alleles. The highest number of alleles (32) was detected in Lemon group while the lowest number (28 alleles) was revealed in Mandarin group. The values of genetic diversity were calculated and ranged from 0.079 in Grapefruit to 0.533 in Mandarin groups. A dendrogram based on the index of genetic distance was established and showing clear separation between Citrus groups where they clustered into two distinct branches. The first one containing cultivars of Lemon group, while the second one included 4 distinct clusters, one for Mandarin cultivars group, one for sweet orange group, one for Grapefruit and pumelo and the fourth one for Kumquat accessions.
12 specific alleles were identified; they will be a helpful tool in the Citrus breeding programs.
Conclusion: The results obtained in the present work proved the utility of SSR markers for evaluating the genetic diversity and relationships between Citrus species maintained in the Department of Citrus Research in Tartous, Syria, and showed high level of genetic similarity within each cultivar and within the species of Grapefruit and of Sweet orange at the tested SSR loci.

Open Access Original Research Article

Polymorphism in Some Egyptian Wheat Varieties Based on SSR-Markers

Nader R. Abdelsalam

Journal of Experimental Agriculture International, Page 951-958
DOI: 10.9734/AJEA/2014/9235

In this study 312 Microsatellite markers were used to analyze DNA polymorphism of three Egyptian wheat aiming to develop specific molecular markers useful in future Egyptian wheat breeding programs. DNA was extracted using the CTAB method and PCR products were separated in an ABI 3730 DNA analyzer. Data were scored using GeneMarker and 2.5% Agarose gel. A Total of 477 fragments were detected and among 312 simple sequences repeat markers 162 were proved to be polymorphic. The percentage of genetic polymorphism ranged from 33% to 100 % and fragment size from 112 to 535 bp. Results of these experiments consider the first step in the effective detection of polymorphism among some Egyptian wheat varieties in order to correct choose for parents in future.

Open Access Original Research Article

Toxicity, Antifeedant and Growth Regulating Potential of Three Plant Extracts against the Desert Locust Schistocerca gregaria Forskal (Orthoptera: Acrididae)

Ebtisam M. Bashir, Hamadttu A. F. El Shafie

Journal of Experimental Agriculture International, Page 959-970
DOI: 10.9734/AJEA/2014/4855

The main objective of this investigation was to assess the toxicity and growth regulating potential of Jatropha (Jatropha curcas L.), neem (Azadirachta indica A. Juss) and argel plant, (Solenostemma argel Hayne) against the desert locust, Schistocerca gregaria. The effect on fecundity, feeding behavior and egg hatchability was also studied. Argel of 5% concentration induced a significantly less (56%) antifeedant effect on desert locust nymphs compared with 79.62 and 78.92% for neem and Jatropha oils respectively. Significant mortality of 40.54 and 43.39% was recorded, 7 days after treatment, in insects treated with 10% concentration of neem and Jatropha oils respectively compared to 15.19% in the control. Argel resulted in the lowest mortality of 20.70% which was not significantly different from the control. There was a significant difference between treatments for the time it took surviving nymphs to moult to the next instar. Nymphs in the control group took significantly less time (11.3 days) to develop from the 5th instar to the 6th instar than those treated with neem and Jatropha oils where they took 17.5 and 16.5 days respectively. Argel was not significantly different from the control. Jatropha oil significantly reduced the fecundity of females developed from nymphs treated in the 3rd instar by 42.2% compared with 58.54% due to neem treatment. Argel caused no significant effect on fecundity of treated insects. Both Jatropha and neem oils resulted in 99.71% egg un-hatchability while argel had no significant effect. Of the three test products, only Jatropha and neem oil have shown growth regulating effect.

Open Access Original Research Article

Performance Characteristics of Wistar Rats Gavaged with Aqueous Extract of Alchornea cordifolia Leaf Meal

Philip C. N. Alikwe, Philips J. Akinbosola, Elijah I. Ohimain

Journal of Experimental Agriculture International, Page 971-977
DOI: 10.9734/AJEA/2014/8855

A 42 day feeding trial of graded administration of aqueous extract of Alchornea cordifolia leaf meal (ACLM) infusion on the body weights and internal organs of forty eight male albino rats (Wistar strain) weighing 131.60±6.79-139.20±6.03g, divided into 4 groups and three replicates of 3rats/replicate in a completely randomized design (CRD) experiment. Treatment I which served as the control received 0.2ml physiological saline solution while the second, third and fourth groups were gastro-gavaged with 200, 400 and 600 mg/kg of ACLM extract orally on daily basis respectively, for six weeks. Rat chow and water intakes were measured twice a week. The weight of each rat was recorded on day 0 and at weekly intervals throughout the course of the study and no mortality nor abnormal behavior of treated rats were observed. The rats were fasted for 24hrs and then sacrificed. Liver, kidney, heart, lung and spleen in the rats were removed. No pathological changes such as organ swelling, atrophy, hypertrophy or remarkable differences in weights of liver, kidney, heart, lung and spleen were observed on the main visceral organs in all treated rats during the study. This indicated that organ relative weights were not affected by administration of ACLM infusion. Weight gains were recorded up to the third week after that those under 400-600gm/kg began to lose weight and the losses were significant when compared with 200mg/kg and the control which were similar. The results indicated a positive health status for 200mg/kg gavaged rats but significant weight depreciation for those gavaged with 400-600mg/kg from the fourth to the sixth week. Therefore, ACLM should not be fed to animals for more than 3weeks on continuous basis to avoid weight losses.