Effects of organic and inorganic fertilisers on the growth and yield of amaranth (Amaranthus hybridus)
Amaranth is a traditional leafy vegetable of the genus Amaranthus spp., which has been consumed throughout history. Amaranth has great potential as a sustainable crop that could improve household food security, nutrition security and farm incomes. The growth environment of amaranth, can have a major impact not only on the productivity of the crop but its nutritional value as well. Production of amaranth in developing countries like Swaziland is very low, if any at all. This could be attributed to, among some reasons, lack of agronomic information on production of amaranth. The objective of this study was to determine the effects of different types of fertilisers on the growth and yield of Amaranthus hybridus. The trial was done at Malkerns Research Station, in Swaziland. The treatments were 20 t ha-1 kraal manure, 40 t ha-1 kraal manure, 100 kg ha-1 2.3.4 (39) + 5% Zn (compound NPK), 150 kg ha-1 2.3.4 (39) + 5% Zn and the control (no fertiliser). The experimental design was a randomised complete block design. Data were collected at 4, 5 and 6 weeks after planting. The data were subjected to analysis of variance through SPSS 20. Mean separation test was performed by the Duncan's new multiple range test at P=0.05 significant level. Addition of any type of fertiliser had significant (P<0.05) effect on plant height, number of leaves, fresh shoot mass and dry shoot mass of Amaranthus hybridus. However, kraal manure and 2.3.4 (39) + 5% Zn applied at different rates were not significantly (P>0.05) different from each other in all the growth and yield parameters at the different harvest stages. It was concluded that addition of fertiliser, either organic or inorganic, promotes the growth rate and yield of Amaranthus hybridus.
Kunene, E.N., Masarirambi, M.T., Gadaga, T.H., Dlamini, P.S., Ngwenya, M.P. and Vilane, V.S. (2019). Effects of organic and inorganic fertilisers on the growth and yield of amaranth (Amaranthus hybridus). Acta Hortic. 1238, 31-38
sustainable, food, nutrition, security, productivity, environment