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Journal of Agronomy
eISSN: 1812-5417
pISSN: 1812-5379

Editor-in-Chief:  Francisco Fabian Fuentes Carmona
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Research Article
Germination and Physiological Traits to Ascertain the Ability of Hormonal Priming to Improve Salinity Tolerance in Sorghum bicolor
Jalal Ahmed Said Mohammad Al-Tabbal
Background and Objective: Salinity is the highest environmental factor that affects seedling stages negatively, thus reduces plant development and production. The objective of this study was to explore the effects of gibberellic acid (GA3) pretreatment on sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) seed germination under salt stress. Materials and Methods: Seeds were soaked in a GA3 solution (50, 100 and 150 ppm in addition to a control), dried using a drypaper, transferred to Petri dishes and treated with sodium chloride (NaCl) solutions at different concentrations (0, 2000 and 4000 ppm). Germination traits, including the length of shoot and root, the ratio of shoot to root, the weight of shoot and root, germination percentage, germination energy, germination rate and germination time and physiological traits index’s, including germination stress tolerance, seedling vigor, shoot and root length stress, fresh weight stress for shoot and root and germination speed were documented. Data was analyzed by two-way ANOVA. Treatments were arranged in a randomized complete block design, in three replications using SAS. Results: Salt stress induced by the NaCl solution significantly affected the germination and physiological traits (p<0.01). Priming seeds with GA3 (50, 100 and 150 ppm) showed a significant effect on these traits. Salt stress significantly decreased most traits, except for the mean germination time, in the absence of GA3. Increasing NaCl concentration decreased the germination and physiological traits; however, GA3 induced these traits only at the moderate salinity level (2000 ppm), whereas, no significant difference between primed and nonprimed seeds was detected at the high salinity level (4000 ppm). Conclusion: Priming sorghum seeds with GA3 play an important role in the plant response to mild salt stress.
Research Article
Drought Effect Simulation on the Growth and Yield Quality of Melon (Cucumis melo L.)
Eko Widaryanto, Karuniawan Puji Wicaksono and Hilyatun Najiyah
Background and Objective: Water is an important factor for the crop growth and development, mainly under the drought condition. The cultivation of Cucumis melo requires water both at vegetative and generative phase which are taking role for metabolic and physiological processes. Further, there are reports that melon development requires different volume of water between vegetative and generative phase. The objective of this study was to investigate the amount of water which is required to the different growth phase of melon variety Apollo to simulate the effect of drought on this changing climate. Materials and Methods: This study conducted on April, 2015 until June, 2015 in screen house using randomized block design consisting of 9 combinations of treatments and with 3 replications. The treatments include: V1G1 [water supply 100% FC (field capacity) in vegetative and generative phase], V1G2 (water supply 100% FC in vegetative phase, 75% FC in generative phase), V1G3 ( water supply 100% FC in vegetative phase, 50% FC in generative phase), V2G1 (water supply 75% FC in vegetative phase, 100% FC in generative phase), V2G2 (water supply 75% FC in vegetative phase, 75% FC in generative phase), V2G3 (water supply 75% FC in vegetative phase, 50% FC in generative phase), V3G1 (water supply 50% FC in vegetative phase, 100% FC in generative phase), V3G2 (water supply 50% FC in vegetative phase, 75% FC in generative phase) and V3G3 (water supply 50% FC in vegetative phase, 50% FC in generative phase. Analysis of the data used in this study is the analysis of variance F-test with a level of 5%. If there is significant effect on the treatment, LSD (least significant difference) is conduct at the level of 5%. Results: The results of this study showed that drought simulation to 50% both in vegetative and generative decrease 50% performance of growth of melon. However, on harvest parameters, 25% drought simulation on just vegetative phase increased 1% of yield, 559.33 g from 549.11 g (control). Conclusion: While simulating 25% drought only to generative phase, increased the level of sweetness from 14.59-15.98% or increased 9% compare to control.
Research Article
Study of Asystasia gangetica (L.) T. Anderson as Cover Crop Against Soil Water Content in Mature Oil Palm Plantation
Mira Ariyanti, Syariful Mubarok and Yenni Asbur
Background and Objective: The study of cover crop in oil palm plantation is more emphasized on its function as soil and water conservation. Cover crop utilization is one of agronomic practice to protect soil surface from any damage caused by rainfall on to the soil surface. Rooting system of the cover crop is able to hold the rain water and in turn maintaining soil water content. This study is aimed to study the effect of Asystasia gangetica (A. gangetica) as cover crop in mature oil palm plantation toward soil water content. Materials and Methods: Research was conducted in mature oil palm plantation. The experiment was conducted by constructing 4×2 m experimental plot between rows of oil palm. The experiment consisted of 2 levels of treatment namely planting cover crop A. gangetica and without planting cover crop. It was repeated 3 times. Hydrological parameter data, precipitation, initial soil water content (SWC), SWC during the experiment at specified soil depth (10, 20, 30, 40 and 50 cm) were observed from each trial plot. Soil water content (SWC) was measured using a sensor that connected with GardSens. Results: The results showed that A. gangetica caused soil water dynamics at the depth 0-20 cm that was at rhizosphere of cover crop. This has a good impact on the water availability of oil palm especially in dry periods when the rate of rainfall less than 60 mm/month. Conclusion: It was concluded that cover crop was able to conserve rain water and increased the water infiltration into the soil. This indicates that cover crop was potentially used to maintain and improve the availability of water requirement for the oil palm plantation.
Research Article
Soil Quality Assessment for Yield Improvement of Clove, Cacao and Cardamom Agro-Forestry System in Menoreh Mountains Area, Indonesia
Priyono Suryanto, Tohari , Eka Tarwaca Susila Putra and Taufan Alam
Background and Objective: Soil quality assessment is one way to formulate strategies to improve the quality and sustainability of land and productivity of the crop. This study aimed to determine parameters of soil quality that affect the yield of cloves, cocoa and cardamom in the agro-forestry system in Menoreh mountains area. Methodology: The stratified random sampling method was used during the research by stratifying the types of soil stratification in Menoreh mountains area, Samigaluh district, Kulonprogo regency, i.e. Yogyakarta, Indonesia that were Lithic Eutrudept, Vertic Haplustalf and Typic Hapludult. The observations were made on 24 physical, chemical and biological properties of soil and the yield of clove, cacao and cardamom. The determination of soil quality indicator was done by using one-way ANOVA at α 5%, factor analysis and standardized stepwise regression. Results: The result shows that the highest dry weight of clove flowers is produced in the soil type of Vertic Haplustalf, sequentially followed by soil types of Typic Hapludult and Lithic Eutrudept. The highest dry weight of cocoa beans and cardamom bulb is produced in the soil type of Vertic Haplustalf, sequentially followed by soil types of Lithic Eutrudept and Typic Hapludult. Conclusion: The dry weight of clove flowers is affected by the percentage of silt fraction of the soil. The dry weight of cocoa beans is influenced by the content of CEC, Ex-Ca and Ex-Na, while the dry weight of cardamom bulbs is influenced by the content of Ex-Ca.
Research Article
Evaluating Multi-split Topdressing as an Option for Improving Nitrogen Management in Lowland Rice
Ofori Joseph, Anning Dominic Kwadwo, Anim Jerry Jacob and Wristberg Joseph NiiKotey
Background and Objective: The contribution of nitrogen fertilizer to grain yield of irrigated rice is phenomenal in Ghana. However; the expected yield level based on the crop potential in this cultivation system is yet to be realized, despite the systematic increase in nitrogen fertilizer rate of application. This could be mainly attributed to inappropriate timing of fertilizer application. Fertilizer management strategy is therefore needed to ensure effective utilization by the rice crop for improved yield. Materials and Methods: The field experiment was conducted at the University of Ghana’s Soil and Irrigation Research Centre-Kpong during 2014 and 2015 cropping seasons to evaluate the influence of N fertilizer rates and timing of application on rice yield. A 3×2 factorial experiment was laid out in a randomized complete block design and replicated three times. Fertilizer rate and time of nitrogen application were the factors involved. The levels of fertilizer rate were: 0, 75, 90 and 120 kg N ha–1, while time of the nitrogen application included; conventional practice (2 times, basal and top dress) and multi-split (weekly application till booting stage) and determined using two-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) using GenStat statistical software (12th edition). Results: High N fertilization rates increased growth and yield components, grain yield. However, better grain yield was obtained when N was multi-split for topdressing (eg. 90 kg N; 5.0 t ha–1) than the conventional method (90 kg N; 4.6 t ha–1). Conclusion: The study revealed that, the generally followed blanket nitrogen application rate and two-split traditional practice, was not adequate to obtain higher yields. Rice response to fertilizer was better at 120 kg N ha–1 than the other lower N rates. However, 120 kg N ha–1 applied at seven splits performed better (5.4 t ha–1) than 120 kg ha–1 applied at the conventional (5.0 t ha–1) application of basal and top-dress at panicle initiation stage.
Research Article
Morphological, Yield and Yield Components of Maize (Zea Mays L.) Grown in Cattle Manure Amended Soil in the Jordan Valley
Hussein Hussein Alhrout, Nabeel Bani-Hani, Moawiya Ahmad Haddad, Jalal Ahmed Said Al-Tabbal, Hammad Khalifeh Aldal`in and Mohammad Minwer Alkharabsheh
Background and Objective: Intensive cropping systems in Jordan valley demand high amounts of chemical fertilizer application to the soils which results in degradation of the soil organic matter and cause water impurity. The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of cattle manure at various rates on maize (Zea mays L.) growth and development. Materials and Methods: A field trial was conducted at the National Center for Agricultural Research and Extension in the Jordan Valley, Northwest of Amman, Jordan, during summer 2015. Six soil treatments were compared using randomized complete block design with 4 replications: No cattle manure (T1) control, 4 t ha–1 (T2), 8 t ha–1 (T3), 12 t ha–1 (T4), 16 t ha–1 (T5) and 20 t ha–1 (T6) cattle manure. The morphological parameters measured were plant height, stem and ear diameters, ear length, plant and ear numbers, yield and yield components of maize. Treatment means were compared using least significant difference (p<0.05). Treatment combinations were organized in a randomized complete block design (RCBD) with 4 replications. Results: It was found that 20 t ha–1 cattle manure (T6) gave the highest performance in terms of plant height, stem and ear diameters, ear length, plant and ear numbers, yield and yield components of maize. Conclusion: The study revealed the importance of cattle manure in producing organic maize with high productivity.
Research Article
Characteristics of Agricultural Landscape Features and Local Soil Fertility Management Practices in Northwestern Amhara, Ethiopia
Kehali Jembere, Tekalign Mamo and Kibebew Kibret
Background and Objective: Detailed characterization of bio-physical resources in agricultural landscapes and documenting locally used soil fertility management practices is required for developing site-specific management scenarios in the study area. In view of this, a study was conducted to characterize the landscape features and related biophysical settings and to identify the local soil fertility management practices in the agricultural lands of Farta, Fogera and Gondar Zuria districts in Northwestern Ethiopia. Materials and Methods: The survey methodology used was spatially stratified grid sampling technique more skewed to agricultural lands. Semi-structured questionnaire was used to collect the required data at the field level. Soil samples collected from 0-20 cm depth were prepared and analyzed in the laboratory following standard procedures. For agro-ecological zone classification altitude measurement results (n = 549) and 10 years (2005-2014) mean monthly rainfall data were used. For data analysis and descriptive statistics, one-way ANOVA and DMR tests (p<0.05) were employed. Results: The high variability in major landforms resulted in the formation of five different agro-ecologies in a comparatively small (3385.17 km2) geographic area. Differences in slope gradient classes significantly affected the selected soil properties. Thus, clay, pH, cation exchange capacity, exchangeable calcium, magnesium, extractable manganese, zinc, iron and copper generally showed a decreasing trend with increasing slope gradient. Six soil types, identified based on soil color, occupy the majority (72%) of the study area and were found to be uniformly deficient in nitrogen, phosphorus, sulfur and boron. Mineral fertilizer was identified as the widely used (84%) type of fertilizer as compared to farmyard manure. Nonetheless, the application rate of mineral fertilizers remained as low as 36.5 kg ha–1 N and 13.2 kg ha–1 P. Conclusion: In general, to conserve the biophysical resources and improve the fertility status of soils in the study area on a sustainable basis, the use of appropriate soil and water conservation practices, site-specific and balanced mineral fertilizer application and amelioration activities are recommended.

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