Abstract

 

 

Accepted 4th November, 2014.

 

An experiment was carried out at the Teaching and Research Farm of the Faculty of Agriculture and Natural Resources Management, Ebonyi State University Abakaliki to study effect of integrated nutrient management on some soil selected physical properties and grain yield of maize. The field was laid out in a Randomized Complete Block Design.  There were five treatments namely poultry droppings mixed with burnt rice husk dust (PBRHD), cow dung mixed with unburnt rice husk dust (CURHD), goat dung mixed with saw dust (GSD) and NPK 20:10:10 fertilizer and control replicated four times. The data obtained from the study were subjected to Statistical Analysis System for Agriculture. The result showed that poultry droppings mixed with burnt rice husk dust (PBRHD), cow dung mixed with unburnt  rice husk dust (CURHD), goat dung mixed with sawdust (GSD) and NPK 20:10:10 fertilizer had significantly (P<0.05) higher effect on total porosity, hydraulic conductivity, gravimetric moisture content (GMC) relative to control. The amendment of PBRHD showed significant (P<0.05) effect on hydraulic conductivity, gravimetric moisture content (GMC) and water retention (WR) when compared with control and NPK 20:10:10 fertilizer treatment. Significantly (P<0.05) lower dispersion ratio was obtained under PBRHD amended plots relative to control and NPK 20:10:10 fertilizer treatment. Furthermore, CURHD and GSD significantly (P<0.05) increased water retention relative to control and NPK 20:10:10 fertilizer application. Total porosity, hydraulic conductivity, gravimetric moisture content and dispersion ratio were higher by 6, 13, 87 and 64% in PBRHD amended plots when compared with NPK 20:10:10 fertilizer amended plots. The texture remained sandy clay loam after cropping. There was significantly (P<0.05) higher effect of PBRHD amendment on grain yield of maize compared to control and NPK 20:10:10 fertilizer treated plots. This was 22 and 20% increments of grain yield of maize in plots amended with PBRHD relative to control and NPK 20:10:10 fertilizer treatment. Generally, the integrated nutrient management improved soil physical properties and grain yield of maize more than control and NPK 20:10:10 fertilizer treatment. The order of improvement is PBRHD>CURHD>GSD>NPK 20:10:10 fertilizer>C. Integrated nutrient management could be recommended for soil management and sustainable productivity in Abakaliki agro-ecosystem of Nigeria.

 

Keywords:    Grain yield, integrated, management, nutrient, physical properties, soil.