A pot experiment was conducted on saline sodic soil (pH = 9.49, EC = 7.92 dSm-1, SAR = 73.26, ESP = 51.64) to determine the effect of farm yard manure (FYM) amendment on the growth of fodderbeet using two types of seeds i.e. coated and non-coated. Shoot growth was enhanced by the addition of FYM in either non saline or saline sodic soil. Non-coated seeds produced taller plants than coated ones. Root growth was slower than shoot. Number of leaves/plant significantly (P < 0.05) increased by the addition of FYM to the soil. Plant fresh and dry weight is increased in the presence of FYM in the soil. Protein and chlorophyll b content increased in plants produced from the coated seeds in the presence of FYM treatment.
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The nutrients (NPK) present in or added to the soil becomes unavailable to plants due to some reactions with the soil. Soils of Pakistan fix up the nutrients added in the form of phosphate-P in varying degrees and in some soils as high as 98% of the phosphates is fix and made unavailable due to some reactions with the soil (Sharif et al., 1966). The crop utilize only 15 to 20% of the applied phosphate and the rest is retained in the form, not readily available (More and Ghonsikar, 1988). The utilization of nutrients by the plant under saline soil conditions is affected by certain factors. Addition of FYM to the soil increases the availability of nutrients to the plant (Sharif et al., 1974). Singh and Dubey (1987) have reported that among nitrogen sources, FYM has beneficial effect on wheat production. Organic manure has duel effect on the improvement of soil environment. It not only increases the nitrifying activities of micro-organisms but also decreases nitrogen by increasing cation exchange capacity of soil (Gasser, 1964). Tisdale (1985) has noted a slight decrease in soil pH due to the formation of humic acids which reduce the volatilization loss of NH3. Most of the reports about the use of FYM for the improved crop production contain data for alkaline calcareous soils of Pakistan (Sharif et al., 1966; Sharif et al., 1974; Gilani et al., 1983; Mian et al., 1989; Sandhu et al., 1989 ). Fodderbeet is known to be a salt tolerant during vegetative growth stage but it is sensitive to salinity/sodicity at germination (Niazi et al., 1997). Some companies coat the seeds of crops with certain chemicals so that during germination harmful ions of soil solution are restricted to the surface of the seeds to reduce the deleterious effect of higher salt concentration on the germination of salt sensitive seeds.
In this study effect of use of different techniques to avoid the effect of salinity/sodicity at the time of germination for the salt sensitive plant species and the role of FYM in the amelioration of plant growth has been tested during 2000-01.
Material and Methods
Non saline soil was collected from National Agricultural Research Center (NARC), field area, while saline sodic soil was brought from Saline Agriculture Sub-Station, Sadhuke (Table 1). Both the soils were air dried, ground and sieved using 0.5 mesh. Half of the quantity of each soil was separately mixed with the FYM @ 10 t ha-1. In this way four types of soils were prepared i.e., normal soil without FYM, normal soil mixed with FYM, saline sodic soil without FYM and saline sodic soil with FYM. Undrained plastic pots were thoroughly washed with tap water and dried. The pots were separated in four groups. Each group contained ten pots. Each group of pots was filled with 5 kg soil per pot from four different soils. Two types of fodderbeet seeds cv., Majoral i.e., non-coated and coated were sown separately in plastic tubs filled with garden soil for raising the nursery. Four week old seedlings were transplanted to the pots in five replicates of each seed type. The pots were kept in glass house and irrigated to field capacity twice a week. The experiment was conducted in CRD. Plants were harvested two times during the experiment with four week interval. Data were recorded for the plant fresh weight, dry weight, leaf area (Li 3100 Area Meter, Li-Corp. Inc. Lincoln, Nebraska, USA), number of leaves and root/shoot length. Plant material was analyzed bio-chemically for protein (Lowery et al., 1951), sugar (Bergmeyer and Brent, 1974) and chlorophyll (Knudson et al., 1977).
|Table 1:||Physico-chemical characteristics of soils used during the experiment|
Data obtained were statistically analyzed according to Little and Hills (1972) using MSTATC version 1.42.
Shoot growth was significantly higher (P < 0.05) during the first four weeks and plant attained full height. Farm yard manure added to normal or saline soil significantly (P < 0.05) promoted the shoot growth due to the high tolerance at vegetative growth stage. Saline soil alone supported the shoot growth compared to control because of the halophylous nature of the plant. A comparatively slower shoot growth was recorded (compared to 1st harvest) during later four weeks. Addition of FYM significantly contributed the plant height in the non saline as well as saline sodic soil during the experiment (Table 2). Root growth was slower than shoot. A significant increase in root length was observed only in normal soil treated with farm yard manure. However development of root was boosted up during 4-8 week under saline sodic soil amended with FYM. Non coated seeds produced non-significantly longer roots than the coated seeds in the presence of FYM (Table 3). Number of leaf was observed to be significantly higher in FYM treated soils (normal as well as saline). During 1st harvest an 11 and 19%increase in the number of leaves in the coated seeds has been observed in the absence and presence of FYM, respectively. In the presence of FYM (non saline soil) the increase in the number of leaves was 58%. This rate decreased to 34% in the saline sodic soil. The number of leaves increased with the growth of plant and an 83 and 43% increase has been observed after 8 weeks in the non saline and sodic soil, respectively. Production of new leaves in plants from non coated seeds continued till 8th week, while plants from coated seeds produced maximum number of leaf till 4th week (Table 4) Interaction of soil treatment of seed type was significant till fourth week. Total increase in the fresh weight of plant was high in FYM treated soil in normal as well as saline conditions. (Table 5). Saline soil, produced as significant higher fresh weight than normal soil regardless of addition of FYM (Table 5).
|Table 2:||Effect of Farm Yard Manure and seed coating on the height (cm) of fodder beet plant under saline sodic soil condition|
|Table 3:||Effect of Farm Yard Manure and seed coating on the root length(cm) of fodderbeet plant under saline sodic soil conditions|
|Table 4:||Effect of Farm Yard Manure and seed coating on the number of leaf of fodderbeet plant under saline sodic soil conditions|
|Table 5:||Effect of Farm Yard Manure and seed coating on the total fresh weight (g) of fodderbeet plant under saline sodic soil conditions|
|Table 6:||Effect of Farm Yard Manure and seed coating on total dry weight (g) of fodderbeet plant under saline sodic soil conditions|
|Table 7:||Effect of Farm Yard Manure and seed coating on average leaf area (cm2) of fodderbeet plant under saline sodic soil conditions.|
|Table 8:||Effect of Farm Yard Manure and seed coating on chlorophyll a and chlorophyll b content (mg g-1) of fodderbeet plant under saline sodic soil conditions|
|Table 9:||Effect of Farm Yard Manure and seed coating on protein content (μg ml-1) of fodderbeet plant under saline sodic soil conditions|
However, after four week, fresh weight of plant grown in normal soil receiving FYM out yielded all the treatments. Dry weight was also recorded to be higher under all soils except control (Table 6). Under normal soil conditions and FYM amendment coated seeds produced 17% higher dry weight than non coated. The saline sodic soils enhanced the biomass accumulation to 38% in the coated seeds and FYM.
Considering the FYM alone, the dry matter increased upto the 91% in sodic soil when FYM was added. The dry matter yield increased upto 125% till the 8th week of growth (2nd harvest). Average leaf area was significantly greater in FYM treated soil under non saline as well as saline sodic soil than the plants grown in control. Saline soil without FYM produced less leaf area than soil + FYM in both cases (Table 7). An increase of 114% in the average leaf area has been recorded in the saline sodic soil amended with FYM. With further growth 88% average leaf area was observed till 8th week. There was no treatment effect observed on chlorophyll a content. However seed type had a non significant effect on chlorophyll b content. Coated seeds produced more chlorophyll than non coated seeds (Table 8). Normal soil + FYM and Saline soil with or without FYM had significantly increased the protein content of the plant (Table 9). Addition of FYM enhanced the synthesis of protein content upto 38%, however, coated seeds produced 29% more protein over non coated seeds.
Organic soil amendments like poultry wastes, compost and other sources are known to improve ameliorative effect on chemical, physical and biological properties of moderately sodic soils (Ahmed et al., 1988). Farm yard manure mixed soil increases the nutrients availability to the plant. This increase may be due to the competition of organic ions with different inorganic ions for binding sites on the soil particles and the complex chelating ions like Al, Fe, and Ca and so, precipitating powers of these cations. In a similar process uptake of P also increases with the application of FYM (More and Ghonsikar, 1988). FYM may play a dual part in improving the soil phosphorus status i.e., decreases the adsorption capacity of soil and increases the soluble phosphorus and phosphorus desorption (Sharif et al., 1974). Plant attained maximum height during early growth showing conformity of finding by Niazi et al. (1999) under saline soil conditions. The photosynthates were mostly utilized in the energy supply for the cell division and development of shoot for the first four weeks. Translocation of photosynthetic material to root was not effective during this period which resulted in a slower root growth. Later active development of root showed that the materials were actively translocated to the sink. Longer roots produced from non-coated seeds may be justified by a direct emergence and contact with the media while in roots produced from those of coated seeds the emergence of root from the coated material may have taken longer time period and delayed contact with the growth media may have delayed the developmental process of root. The increase observed in the total fresh weight of plant under farm yard manures treated soil in normal and saline conditions may be related to the availability of essential nutrients to the plant, as it was also obvious from the greater number of leaf/plant. A regular new leaf formation in coated seeds till 8th week favored the accumulation of fresh weight of plant increase in leaf area under FYM treated soil showed an other favorable affect on growth of plant by maximum interception of light energy of synthesis of carbohydrates and other energy rich bio - chemical materials. Dry weight accumulation was also significantly higher than control. Addition of FYM promoted the synthesis of protein under saline sodic conditions. The coated seeds also synthesized significantly higher protein content than non saline soil even in the absence of FYM. The chlorophyll a and b content produced in plant did not show any significant effect of salinity/sodicity FYM or coated seeds. It is in collaboration with the findings of Papp et al. (1983). The coated seed has shown some positive behavior in avoiding the deleterious affects of sodicity and the growth was ameliorated in the plants produced from coated seeds in the presence of FYM. It may has helped the availability of nutrients to plants.
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- Niazi, V.H., J. Rozema and M. Salim, 1999. The response of fodderbeet to salinity: An analysis of physiological and morphological aspects of growth. Pak. J. Biol. Sci., 2: 466-471.