Yield performances of tomatoes (Lycopersicum esculentum) on organic manure buffered lateritic soils
Lateritic soils are found in many farms even though they have not been known to be encouragingly productive to farmers because of their non-supportive of agricultural products. This experiment was to help farmers whose lands are lateritic to produce more crops/ha when buffered with organic manure. There were six treatments namely: laterite soil, laterite soil buffered with organic manure, laterite soil buffered with NPK 15-15-15, sandy loam soil, sandy loam soil buffered with organic manure (OM) and sandy loam soil buffered with NPK 15-15-15. There were three replicates for each treatments, the arrangement was 2 × 6 × 3 factorial design of 36 pots, parameters measured during the experiment were days to emergency, days to flowering, days to fruiting, number of branches, number of fruits per plant, nodes and internodes, stem girth length, leaf length of plant, plant height (from the surface of the soil to the apex (tip) of the plant) at twice a week and number of leaves per plant counted and recorded each week. The whole arrangements were subjected to the same environmental and climatic conditions. Chemical and physical characteristics of the soil in different treatments were done in the laboratory before and after. The data collected were subjected to two-way ANOVA. The results revealed that seed germination percentage was higher in sandy-loam buffered soil, 92.5%, followed by lateritic buffered soil 87.5%. Statistical analysis showed statistical differences among the yield and yield parameters for types of soil. However, the growth parameters taken as height, number of leaves, fresh and dry weight were found to be higher in sandy-loam soil followed by laterite soil and finally alluvium soil. Statistical analysis of these also showed significant differences between the types of soil used. Laterite buffered soil could yield as high as sandy loam soil in the production of tomatoes.
Keywords: buffered laterite, number of leaves, sandy-loam, soil factors