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EFFECTS OF FERTILIZERS ON SOIL MICROBIAL DIVERSITY, GROWTH AND YIELD OF TWO PASTURE GRASSES

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EFFECTS OF FERTILIZERS ON SOIL MICROBIAL DIVERSITY, GROWTH AND YIELD OF TWO PASTURE GRASSES

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Title page………………………i

Certification………………………iii

Dedication………………………iv

Acknowledgment……………………v

Table of contents ……………………vii

List of Tables………………………x

Abstract………………………x

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION-------1

Objective of the Study-------3

CHAPTER TWO

Literature Review-------4

2.1Soil Microbial Diversity.------4

2.2Effects of Anthropogenic Waste Liquid on Soil Microbes--5

2.3Effects of Chemical Fertilizers on Soil Microbes---5

2.4Effects of Cattle Dung on Soil Microbes----6

2.5Human Urine as a Fertilizer------6

Response of panicum maximum to Fertilization---7

2.7Response of sorghum almum to Fertilization----7

2.8 Description of Test Crops------8

2.8.1 panicum maximum --------8

2.8.2 sorghum almum -------9

CHAPTER THREE

3.0Materials and Method-------10

3.1Experimental Site-------10

3.2Collection of soil Sample, Seed and Fertilizer---10

3.3Experimental Layout-------13

3.4 Fertilizer Application-------13

3.5 Data Collection--------14

3.5.1 Sward Height (cm)-------14

3.5.2 Sward Re-growth (cm) -------14

3.5.2 Fresh Herbage Yield (g) ------14

3.5.3 Dry Herbage Yield (g)-------14

3.6 Statistical Analysis-------14

3.7 Soil Sample Microbial Analysis------15

3.7.1 Enumeration of Micro-Organism in Soil Samples From Different Treatments using the Serial Dilution Method.----15

3.7.2 Equipment Used:-------15

3.7.3 Materials: ----------15

3.7.4 Medium Used: ---------15

3.7.5 Media Preparation-------15

3.7.6 Preparation of Sample: -------16

3.7.7 Inoculation: ---------16

3.7.8 Incubation: ---------16

CHAPTER FOUR

Result ----------18

CHAPTER FIVE

Discussion---------27

CHAPTER SIX

Conclusion ----------27

Reference---------29

LIST OF TABLES

Table 1: Physical and Chemical Properties of the Experimental soil-12

Table 2: Effect of Fertilizer on Sward Height at 2,4 and 6 weeks after sowing.20

Table 3: Effect of Fertilizers on the Sward Regrowth at 2, 4 and 6 weeks after sowing ---------22

Table 4:Effect of Fertilizers on Herbage Yield ----24

Table 5: Enumeration of Microbial Population for the Various Treatment.-26

ABSTRACT

A 6 month study was conducted in the screen house and laboratory of the Department of Crop Science, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Benin, Benin City. The objective was to ascertain the effects of fertilizers on soil microbial diversity growth and yield of two forage grasses. The experiment was set up in a Completely Randomized Design (CRD) arrangement. There were 10 factorial treatments, made up from five fertilizers (Control, Anthropogenic liquid waste a (1:3 and 1:6 dilutions), NPK and cattle dung) and two forage grasses (Sorghum almum and Panicum maximum) replicated three times. The parameters measures were sward height, sward regrowth, fresh and dry herbage yields. Serial dilution of the fertilized soils was carried out to enumerate the microbial populations. Generally, Anthropogenic liquid waste (1:3) and NPK(15:15:15) were equal in performance and better than the other fertilizers in terms of herbage growth (sward height and sward regrowth). Anthropogenic liquid waste (1:3) produced the significantly highest fresh and dry herbage yields among the fertilizers. Furthermore Anthropogenic liquid waste (1:3) favoured the highest proliferation of microbes. The favourable response of the grasses and the higher microbial population in the soil treated with Anthropogenic liquid waste implies that this fertilizer contains high quantities of readily available plant nutrients.


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