Growth response of maize (Zea mays) intercropped with Rhizobium inoculated soybean (Glycine max (L.) Merr.) and P and K fertilization

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Research Paper 01/07/2017
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Growth response of maize (Zea mays) intercropped with Rhizobium inoculated soybean (Glycine max (L.) Merr.) and P and K fertilization

Daniel Nyoki, Patrick A. Ndakidemi
J. Bio. Env. Sci.11( 1), 216-224, July 2017.
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The research was carried out for the two consecutive cropping seasons in northern Tanzania to evaluate the effects of cropping systems and P and K fertilization on maize growth. A split-split plot design experiment with 2x4x7 factorial arrangements and replicated thrice was conducted. The main plots comprised of two rhizobia inoculation treatments on Soybean, the sub plots comprising sole maize (SM) at a spacing of 75x60cm; sole soybean at a spacing of 75x40cm; maize-soybean intercropped at 75×60 and 75x20cm, maize and soybean respectively; and the last cropping system was maize-soybean intercropped at 75×60 and 75x40cm, maize and soybean respectively. The fertilizer levels: control; 20K; 40K; 26P; 52P; 26P+20K; 52P+40K (kg ha-1) were assigned to sub-subplots. The results indicated that both cropping systems and P and K fertilization improved maize growth for the two cropping seasons. The plant height was significantly higher in M+B(A)+R and M+B(B)+R. The stem girth, plant vigor and greenness were statistically similar in sole maize (SM), M+B(A)+R and M+B(B)+R for both seasons. Any level of P and K significantly increased all growth attributes measured. The 40K+52P (kg ha-1) performed better than all other fertilizers treatments. Therefore, intercropping maize with Rhizobium inoculated soybean at wider spacing and supplemented with P and K applied at higher rate of 40K+52P (kg ha-1) will result in improved plant growth and hence final yield.


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