Farmers are confronted by the high cost of farm inputs specially inorganic fertilizers.
With the growing demand for bio-fertilizers as alternative or supplement to organic fertilizers, researchers from the Western Mindanao Horticulture Center (WHMC), evaluated the different types of fertilizers.
Applying them singly and in combination, the researchers tested the effects of ten fertilizer treatments on the growth and yield of hybrid sweet pepper under rainshelters. The study was conducted at WHMC, Siari, Sindangan, Zamboanga del Norte.
Results showed that the use of the recommended rate of 90-80-30 kg of nitrogen, phosphorous, and potash (NPK) per hectare (/ha), plus one bag of Granular Humic Acid (GHA)/ha at 90 days, produced the tallest plants measuring about 88.31 cm and widest plant canopy at 89.74 cm.
The same rate of NPK/ha minus the GHA, on the other hand, produced the longest fruit at 9.25 cm, while the same rate of NPK/ha plus Bio-N at 5 packs/ha, produced the biggest fruit with a circumference of 9.10 cm. After 17 primings (staggered harvestings), this fertilizer combination gave the most number of fruits per plant at 70.32 fruits, the heaviest fruit at 1.66 kg plant and the highest number of non-marketable fruits at 3.98 kg/plant.
The combination of NPK and Bio-N which observed the same recommended rate also provided the highest net income of P46,412/450 square meters followed by the recommended rate of NPK at P39,972/450 square meters. The two fertilizer treatments, in that order, also provided the highest return of investment with 268 percent and 232 percent, respectively.
The results of the study showed that farmers can expect better yield of sweet pepper through the application of the recommended rate of NPK at 90-80-30 kg/ha plus five packs of Bio–N/ha. When added to recommended rate of inorganic fertilizers, the nitrogen-fixing bacteria from Bio-N can further increase sweet pepper yield and farmers‘ income.
This and other information on research and development activities pertaining to the agriculture, forestry and natural resources (AFNR) sectors are featured in the 2009 Highlights.
A yearly publication of the Philippine Council for Agriculture, Forestry and Natural Resources Research and Development (PCARRD) Highlights presents the research and development accomplishments of government institutions towards bringing better opportunities for our people especially in the countryside. Ricardo R. Argana, S&T Media Service