Growth Response of Afzelia africana (SM. EX PERS.) Seedlings to Different Potting Mixtures

Abstract


Agbogidi, O.M. and Avwevughware, O. I

A study was carried out at the nursery site of the Department of Forestry and Wildlife Delta State University (DELSU), Asaba Campus, Nigeria in 2008 to investigate the growth response of Afzelia africana seedlings to different potting mixtures. Top garden soil (100%), top garden soil (50%) + pig manure (50%) (TS+PM), sharp sand (50%) + cow dung (50%) (SS+CD) and sawdust (50%) + poultry droppings (50%) (SD+PD) sourced from DELSU, Asaba campus served as the treatments. Seedlings from Forestry Research Institute of Nigeria, Ibadan. Oyo State were transplanted into bottom perforated polypots. The set up comprised four treatments arranged in a randomized complete block design and replicated four times. The experiment was monitored for 12 weeks after transplanting (WAT) while growth characteristics were measured forth nightly. The results showed that A. africana seedlings sown in a mixture of SS+CD had the highest plant height, number of leaves, leaf area and collar diameter and were significantly (P≤0.05) different from those planted in the other mixtures TS alone and TS+PM). A. africana seedlings exposed to SD+PD died as from the 3rd week after transplanting (WAT). No trace of life was noticed as from the 4 WAT. Conclusively, Afzelia africana seedling responds differently to potting mixtures with the mixture of SS+CD producing the highest growth characteristics hence SS+CD could be recommended to A. africana growers. Alternatively, 100% TS and a mixture of TS+PM could also be used by Afzelia africana growers.

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