ASSESSMENT OF DECOMPOSED FALSE YAM (ICACINA OLIVIFORMIS) TUBER AS PLANT GROWTH MEDIUM
The study was carried out in attempt to use false yam tuber as soil amendment for plant growth. False yam tubers were harvested, processed into smaller pieces and decomposed for six different weeks (2, 4, 6, 8, 10 and 12 weeks). Decomposed false yam tubers from the various treatments were mixed with top soil in the ratio 1:1, 1:2 and 2:1 (false yam: sand ratio) with soil as control. Maize seed was used as test crop with germination percentage, plant height, number of leaves, plant girth and leaf area index as growth parameters. The study revealed that decomposed false yam tuber has better physical capacity to support seed germination when added to soil. Results indicated that treatment 1:2 had the highest plant height, number of leaves and plant girth followed by the control, treatment 1:1 and then treatment 2:1 at week 10 and 12 of false yam decomposition. Also treatment 1:2 had the highest leaf area index followed by treatment 1:1, control and then treatment 2:1 at week 12 of false yam decomposition. The study revealed that decomposed false yam tuber has the ability to support plant growth and development when added to soil in a ratio of 1:2.When the quantity of decomposed false yam becomes higher than the soil,or sand the media become injurious to plant growth and development and may be due to too much moisture absorption leading to anaerobic condition in the medium. Further decomposition of the false yam tuber into compose may establish its usefulness as plant growth media.
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