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The Efficacy of Different Mulching Materials in Influencing Growth, Yield, Soil and Quality Parameters of Ginger Cultivated in Low Country Intermediate Zone (IL1) of Sri Lanka

Authors:

R. P. D. N. Kumara ,

The Open University of Sri Lanka, LK
About R. P. D. N.
Department of Agricultural and Plantation Engineering
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C. S. De Silva

The Open University of Sri Lanka, LK
About C. S.
Department of Agricultural and Plantation Engineering
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Abstract

Even though mulching is a well-known fact among cultivators they are seemingly unaware of its contribution to growth and yield of Ginger and its ability to cope with temperature and water stress. Therefore, a field experiment was conducted at the Intercropping and Betel Research Station, Narammala to investigate the effect of different mulching materials on growth, yield, quality parameters of Ginger and the soil parameters in the Low country intermediate zone (IL1) of Sri Lanka. The study was also extended to find out the best mulching material for Ginger under certain field conditions. The findings are expected to contribute to eliminate the uncertainty faced by farmers when selecting suitable mulch for Ginger. The mulches tested were straw, gliricidia leaves, coconut leaves, coir dust and polythene. A control treatment was used without the use of mulch. Experiment was carried out as a Randomized Complete Block Design (RCBD) with three replications. Plant and soil parameters were measured at monthly intervals. All the treatments showed better performances than the control treatment which did not use mulch. The maximum number of sprouted plants was obtained in plots mulched with gliricidia. Further, the significantly highest plant height and number of pseudostems per clump were observed in gliricidia mulched plants. Fresh weight and dry weight of rhizomes too followed the similar pattern of measured growth parameters. Plots that did not used mulch recorded the lowest growth rate and yield of Ginger. Soil moisture conservation was significantly higher in the treatments with mulch than the control treatment. Polythene mulch was more effective for conserving of soil moisture than other mulches. However, all the soil parameters significantly contributed to the highest yield of Ginger in Gliricidia mulch treatment. The pungency level of Ginger was significantly higher in the control treatment. In this study gliricidia mulch positively contributed to increase the yield of Ginger (43.66% per hectare) more than the average yield denoted by DEA. Keeping the above facts in view, gliricidia proved to be the best mulch for Ginger cultivation in the low country intermediate zone (IL1) of Sri Lanka. Therefore, the results of this study will help the farmers to use the correct mulch to get significantly higher yield.
How to Cite: Kumara, R.P.D.N. and De Silva, C.S., 2019. The Efficacy of Different Mulching Materials in Influencing Growth, Yield, Soil and Quality Parameters of Ginger Cultivated in Low Country Intermediate Zone (IL1) of Sri Lanka. OUSL Journal, 14(2), pp.7–29. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/ouslj.v14i2.7473
Published on 30 Dec 2019.
Peer Reviewed

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