EFFECTS OF NITROGEN FERTILIZER AND POULTRY MANURE RATES ON GROWTH, YIELD AND YIELD CHARACTERS OF SUNFLOWER (Helianthus annus L.)

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Abstract:

Field experiments were conducted during the wet seasons of 2002 and 2003 at the research farm of the Institute For Agricultural Research, Ahmadu Bello University, Samaru, Zaria (11o 11’N, 7o38’E) 686m above the sea level in the northern Guinea Savanna ecological zone of Nigeria. The aim of the experiment was to evaluate the effects of four levels of nitrogen fertilizer (0,60,120 and 180 kg ha-1) and four levels of poultry manure (0,10,20 and 30 t ha-1), on the growth, yield and yield characters of sunflower (var. Is’anka). The experiments were laid out in randomized complete block design (R.C.B.D) and replicated three times. Nitrogen fertilizer and poultry manure applied at higher rates of 120 kg and 20 t ha-1 respectively significantly increased the growth parameters, particularly plant height and total dry matter per plant over the lower rates in both years and the combined 2002 and 2003 rainy seasons. Stand count at harvest however decreased with increased nitrogen and poultry manure rates from control. The application of nitrogen fertilizer and poultry manure alone or in combination at higher rates of 120 kg N ha-1 and 20 t Pm ha-1 increased yield characters particularly, head dry weight, head diameter, number of seeds per head and seed yield per head. Poultry manure application significantly increased 100-seed weight more than nitrogen fertilizer when applied alone at 30 t ha-1, while days to 50% flowering reduced with increased poultry manure rates, but was not significantly affected by nitrogen fertilizer rates in both years and the combined analysis. The application of 20 t Pm ha-1 produced significantly higher seed yield per hectare of 4.2 tonnes as against 1.7 tonnes in the control and appeared to be the best nutrient requirement for optimum seed yield of sunflower at Samaru in the northern Guinea savanna agroecological zone of Nigeria. Positive and significant correlations was observed between seed yield and all other characters tested, except days to 50% flowering and stand count at harvest which negatively correlated with seed yield per hectare.

EFFECTS OF NITROGEN FERTILIZER AND POULTRY MANURE RATES ON GROWTH, YIELD AND YIELD CHARACTERS OF SUNFLOWER (Helianthus annus L.)

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