Influence of physicochemical and microbiological properties on the composting of agro wastes using cow dung as a booster
The influence of physicochemical and microbiological properties on composting of agro wastes using cow dung as a booster was evaluated. The physicochemical parameters measured include pH, temperature and moisture. Titrimetric and spectrophotometric measurements of chemical nutrients as well as microbial assay using spread plating technique on several selective media were done. The results of pH, temperature and moisture content revealed lower pH (acidity) to higher pH (alkalinity) (7.5 – 9.0), slight temperature increased (24.9 – 27.3 °C), increased (20.33 – 66.00 %) and later declined in moisture content. The result of the chemical composition revealed significant increase in all nutrients except potassium with slight decrease (5.74 – 5.06 ppm). The result of the microbial analysis revealed that there were increased microbial count (0.413 X 105 – 6.78 X 105 cfu/ g) for all isolated microbial groups except total bacteria, fungi and anaerobes with numerous count. The cow dung which acts as booster improved the early maturity and nutrient contents of the composting depending on the levels of application. Statistically, there were significant differences detected among the four compost treatments throughout the composting period at p<0.05. Thus, the significant transformation of these organic materials into resourceful dark brown composts made composting a promising waste recycling process and promoter of soil quality.
Keywords: Agro wastes, Environmental pollution, Composting, Microbes, Pollution control