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Response of palm oil sludge on sexual reproductive biology and root development of some crops in southern Nigeria

JA Orluchukwu


Experiment on the influence of different rates of palm oil sludge (0, 4000lit/ha, 8000lit/ha, and 12000lit/ha) application on flower initiation and root development of okra (Abelmoschus esculentus), maize (Zea mays L.) and cowpea (Vigna unguiculata (L.) Walp) were investigated in Port Harcourt, Nigeria. The result of the trial shows that there was significant (P<0.05) variation in the time of flowering for the crops as the treatment levels increases. The highest number of flower initiation for maize was obtained at 4000lit/ha application. At a higher level of application (12000lit/ha) the number of flowers decreased in all the crops studied hence the success of seed production was adversely affected. On root development, number of roots and length of roots decreased as the treatment levels increases from 4000lit/ha to 8000lit/ha and above in okra and maize. On cowpea root nodulation, there was significant (P<0.05) difference among the sludge levels. The nodules number increased from 22.3 to 63.0 per stand, with an increase in sludge rate from 4000lit/ha to 12000lit/ha. The number of flower initiation differs significantly at higher rate of sludge application. It is recommended to apply lower oil palm sludge rate (4000lit/ha) which enhances seed production of maize and okra and a higher rate (12000lit/ha) for root nodulation of cowpea.

Key-words: Palm oil sludge, Flowering, Root development, Okra, Cowpea, Maize

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eISSN: 1595-7470