The main objective of the present investigation was to determine the growth attributes of two groundnut varieties as influenced by sowing date and NPK compound fertilizer rate. Treatments were factorial combinations of three sowing dates (mid-June, end-June and mid-July), three fertilizer rates (10 kg N+13 kg P+13 kg K ha-1, 20 kg N+26 kg P+26 kg K ha-1and 30 kg N+39 kg P+39 kg K ha-1) and two varieties (SAMNUT-22 and SAMNUT-23). Fertilizer rate x sowing date constituted the main plot, while varieties were assigned to the sub-plot as the experiment was laid out in split-plot design with four replications. Canopy spread at 9 Weeks After Sowing (WAS) declined with delay in sowing in 2005. Application of 20 kg N+26 kg P+26 kg K ha-1 increased canopy spread significantly. The widest canopy spread in 2005 resulted from the application of 30 kg N+39 kg P+39 kg K ha-1 to mid-June sown crop. Dry matter at 9 WAS in 2004 declined 21.2% when sown in mid-July while at 12 WAS it declined 25.1% and by 23.3% in 2005. Variety SAMNUT-23 accumulated 18.6% greater dry matter than var. SAMNUT-22. During the period 9-12 WAS crop growth rates were highest for the mid-June sown crop and 20 kg N+26 kg P+26 kg K ha-1 fertilizer rate, with a value that was 59.4 and 50.1% higher than those for the lowest and highest fertilizer rates, respectively. Delayed sowing delayed 50% flowering. Variety SAMNUT-22 flowered 8 days later than var. SAMNUT-23 and when sown early (in mid-June) and treated with 20 kg N+26 kg P+26 kg K ha-1 out-performed SAMNUT-23 in growth attributes.
H.M.B. Bala, V.B. Ogunlela, B. Tanimu and N.C. Kuchinda, 2011. Response of Two Groundnut (Arachis hypogaea L.) Varieties to Sowing Date and NPK Fertilizer Rate in a Semi-Arid Environment : Growth and Growth Attributes. Asian Journal of Crop Science, 3: 141-150.