Response of plantain to mulch on a tropical Ultisol.
Part I. Effect of different mulching materials on soil physical and chemical properties
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Department of Geography, University of Port Harcourt, P .M. B. 5323 Port Harcourt, Nigeria
College of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine, Imo State University, P.M.B. 2000 Okigwe, Nigeria
ITA, High Rainfall Substation, Onne, Port Harcourt, Nigeria
Publication date: 2020-09-23
Int. Agrophys. 1992, 6(1-2): 55–64
Field experiments were conducted on an Ultisol near Port Harcourt in south-east Nigeria. The broad objective was to evaluate the response of plantain to mulch. Medium false horn plantain (Musa sp. cv AAB) known locally as 'Agbagba' was used in the trial. The treatments were: elephant grass (Pennisetum purpureum), opaque plastic (black underneath and white at the top) adequately perforated, elephant grass on plastic, plastic on elephant grass, wood shavings, unmulched control. In this paper, we present the effect of the different mulch materials on soil physical (bulk density, temperature, thermal efficiency) and chemical (pH, organic carbon, total nitrogen, Bray-P, cation exchange capacity) properties. In general, organic mulches (elephant grass and wood shavings) or plastic on elephant grass maintained more favourable soil physical and chemical properties than inert synthetic (plastic) mulch or unmulched control. Comparison between plastic and organic mulches suggests that effect of mulch on soil was both physical and chemical. The results emphasize the beneficial effects of mulching on soil properties under plantain.