Short-term effect of co-applied biochar with poultry manure and npk fertiliser on soil health for okra yield and profitability
Samuel Obeng Apori 1, Pius Nina2
1Uganda Martyrs University, Fac. of Agriculture, Uganda
This study integrated biochar application with organic and inorganic resources to assess their influence on okra crop yield. Biochar has proved to be a simple and reliable technology for long-term improvement of weathered tropical soils. The substance used is black and rich in carbon, often referred to as biochar, and it can be combined with an organic fertiliser. Currently, overall crop yield and production economics in sub-Saharan Africa are highly insufficient due to low soil nutrients. In the context of raipd population growth in Sub-Saharan Africa, an insufficient food production due to degraded soils is indeed worrying. Hence, a field experiment within Uganda’s tropical soil conducted with 5 t/ha biochar was solely applied on the one hand and co-applied with poultry manure and NPK on the other hand. The study adopted Complete Randomised Block (CRB) experimental design with four replications involving six (6) treatments: control, poultry manure, biochar, 15-15-15 NPK fertiliser, biochar, poultry manure, and biochar and NPK. The co-applied biochar with poultry manure and NPK significantly increased the soil pH, effective cation exchange capacity, okra yield and net income compared to solely applied poultry manure and NPK. In addition, the co-applied biochar with NPK significantly increased okra yield and profitability than the co-applied biochar with poultry manure. The results suggest that co-application of biochar with poultry manure andNPK can potentially remediate weathered soils in the tropics and turn increase farmers’ income. Therefore, reclamation of highly weathered tropical soil should be centreed on soil management practices that potentially increase the above soil quality indicators, so as to ensure the productivity of crops. This study demonstrated that combined biochar application with poultry manure and/NPK increased soil quality indicators such as soil pH, total organic carbon, soil available phosphorus, and total nitrogen.
Keywords: Monetary efficiency, okra yield, production economics, soil health
Contact Address: Pius Nina, Uganda Martyrs University, Faculty of Agriculture, P.O. Box 5498, Kampala, Uganda, e-mail: piusm.ninagmail.com