Vol.8 No.2 (2013)

Effect of poultry manure and plant population on productivity of fluted pumpkin (Telfaiaria occidentalis Hook F.) in Calabar, Nigeria

John Okokoh Shiyam* & Walter Bisong Binang

Field experiments were conducted during the 2010-2011 cropping season at the Crop Science Research Farm of the University of Calabar, Nigeria (04o 57' N and 08o 18' E; 37 meters above mean sea level) to investigate the effect of poultry manure application (0, 6, 12 and 24 t ha-1) and plant population densities (10,000, 20,000 and 40,000 plants ha-1) on leaf productivity of fluted pumpkin (Telfaiaria occidentalis Hook F), a vine grown as a leaf vegetable in west Africa. The experimental design was a 3× 4 factorial in a randomised complete block design replicated four times. Results indicated significant (P = 0.05) increase in vine length, leaf proliferation, fresh leaf weight/plant and dry matter production. Longest vines with 256 cm length, bearing 181 leaves/plant, with highest fresh leaf weight of 5,435 kg ha-1 and correspondingly highest dry matter yield of 183.5 kg ha-1, were obtained by applying poultry manure at 24 t ha-1 to 20,000 plants ha-1. This indicates that the application of poultry manure at 24 t ha-1 and a plant population density of 20,000 plants ha-1 in fluted pumpkin (Telfaiaria occidentalis Hook F) seems optimal and leads to increased vegetative growth and leaf productivity of fluted pumpkin in the Calabar area of Cross River State, Nigeria. Overall, crop management adopting the optimal poultry manure application and the optimal plant population density can boost fluted pumpkin productivity for poverty reduction and improved livelihood of resource poor farmers in Nigeria and comparable socio-agro-economic environments in Sub-Saharan African countries.

Key words: Fluted pumpkin, poultry manure, organic fertiliser, organic farming, plant population, leaf weight, leaf productivity, Calabar, Nigeria, Sub-Saharan Africa, Africa.


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Author Contact

Department of Crop Science, University of Calabar, Calabar, Nigeria



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