GROWTH RESPONSE OF TOMATO TRANSPLANTS TO DIFFERENT AMOUNTS OF VERMICOMPOST IN THE POTTING MEDIA
The application of vermicompost as substrate amendment could benefit the vegetable transplants production and provide a sustainable nutrient management approach for the improvement of plants growth. The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of increasing amounts of cow-horse manure vermicompost on the growth and the nutrition of tomato transplants. Tomato transplants were grown in 0.5 L of peat moss and perlite mixture at 1:1 (v/v) ratio, in which the vermicompost constitutes 10 to 50% of the mixtures volume. Some growth characteristics as well as some physicochemical and chemical properties of the vermicompost-amended potting mixtures were investigated. The results indicated that utilization of 10 to 50% vermicompost stimulated the growth of tomato plants. The positive effect of the vermicompost on plant growth increased parallel with the increase of its content in the substrate volume. An increase of up to 3.7-fold was observed in shoot fresh weight, up to 2.6-fold increase in shoot length, up to 62% increase in leaf area, and up to 28% increase in number of leaves when vermicompost constituted 10-50% of the mixture volume, compared to the control (peat moss and perlite mixture without vermicompost). Moderate to strong correlations were established between N and K in potting mixtures and in plant tissues, suggesting that vermicompost contributes considerably to the supply of the plant with these nutrients. Consequently, the cow-horse manure vermicompost should be taken into consideration as a potential peat substitute in nurseries.
Dintcheva, T. and Tringovska, I. (2012). GROWTH RESPONSE OF TOMATO TRANSPLANTS TO DIFFERENT AMOUNTS OF VERMICOMPOST IN THE POTTING MEDIA . Acta Hortic. 960, 195-201
Solanum lycopersicum L., plant nursery, peat substrate, cow manure, worm castings