Open Access Subscription or Fee Access
Growth performance and yield response of Telfairia occidentalis to three levels of fertilizer under four supplemental irrigation application rates
Telfairia occidentalis (Fluted Pumpkin) is classified as a high value leafy vegetable due to its high nutritional indices (2.38%N, 14.88% crude protein, 9.64% Fat, 9.38% Fibre, 9.46% ash, 80.27 % moisture, 26.10 % dry matter and 54.3% vitamin C content (mg/100g). A control experiment at 0 kg/ha (F1) and three other fertilizer levels (N P K 15-15-15) at 300kg/ha (F2), 400kg/ha (F3) and 500 kg/ha (F4) in combination with four irrigation rates/frequencies were evaluated to determine their effects on growth performance, vine/shoot and pod yield of Telfairia occidentalis. Irrigation treatments include watering once per week (W1) at 48 mm, watering twice per week (W2) at 96 mm, watering thrice per week (W3) at 144 mm and watering four times per week (W4) at 192 mm. The experiment was a factorial experiment in split plot design. Results obtained showed that maximum canopy formation in terms of leaf area per plant (268.39cm2) was significantly superior (P<0.05) under irrigation application rate of 48 mm and zero fertilizer level of 0kg/ha (F1 W1). Stem diameter differed significantly (P<0.05) among the treatments. Irrigation rate of 48 mm with fertilizer level of 400 kg/ha (F3 W1) produced the highest mean value of stem diameter (7.40 mm) showing more possibility of moisture intake. Similarly, vine/shoot and pod yields were significantly higher (P<0.05) under irrigation rate of 96 mm and fertilizer level of 300kg/ha (F2 W3) (10.28 t/ha) and irrigation rate of 48 mm and fertilizer level of 400 kg/ha (F4 W1) (1.33 t/ha) respectively. Generally, considering prohibitive cost of mineral fertilizer and the scarcity of water for dry season planting, F2 W3 was considered optimum for sustainable production of Telfairia occidentalis.
Keywords: Telfairia occidentalis; yield; fertilizer; irrigatio
Moor Journal of Agricultural Research Vol. 6 (1&2) 2005 pp. 1-6