Poster Number 530
Wednesday, 8 October 2008
George R. Brown Convention Center, Exhibit Hall E
As a part of the conservation research being carried out on vegetable crops in
Mississippi, a study was conducted on eggplant to determine the effects of plant density on yield, biomass development and soil loss prediction at various growth stages. A common cultivar “Black Beauty” was raised on a Memphis Silt Loan soil (Typic Hapludalf, Silty, Mixed, Thermic) at low plant density (LPD), 0.760m x 0.912m; and high plant density (HPD), 0.609m x 0.912m in the summer of 2005. No chemicals were applied on the crop. All plants received equal quantity of manures with 0.454 g of worm castings and composted cow manure. Three plants from each experimental unit in four replications (for a total of 12) were randomly selected for destructive harvest at various growth stages. A pair comparison design was used and analysis of variance was run. Plant and canopy height, rhizosphere width, and root length were higher for HPD compared to LPD. Dry upper and total biomass per plant, leaf area index (LAI), fruit length and diameter, and yield were higher for LPD. There was no difference in canopy width, stem diameter and percent canopy cover. LPD is more advisable for farmers because it was higher in LAI, total dry biomass, which indicates a higher degree of soil protection, and yield per plant.
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