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American Journal of Experimental Agriculture, ISSN: 2231-0606,Vol.: 9, Issue.: 3

Original-research-article

Micro-Dosing of Inorganic Inputs on Maize Production on an Acid Soil in Kenya: An Agronomic and Economic Evaluation

 

P. O. Kisinyo1*, P. A. Opala2, S. O. Gudu1 and C. O. Othieno3

1Department of Agronomy and Environmental Science, Rongo University College, P.O.Box 103-40404, Rongo, Kenya.

2Department of Soil Science, Maseno University, P.O.Box, Private Bag, Maseno, Kenya.

3Department of Soil Science, University of Eldoret, P.O.Box 1125-30100, Eldoret, Kenya.

Article Information
Editor(s):
(1) Moreira Martine Ramon Felipe, Departamento de Enxeñaría Química, Universidade de Santiago de Compostela, Spain.
Reviewers:
(1) Anonymous, Bangladesh.
(2) Msr Krishna, Agricultural Biotechnology, KL University, India.
Complete Peer review History: http://sciencedomain.org/review-history/10382

Abstracts

Aims: The study determined the effect of micro-dosing of lime, P and N fertilizers on maize grain yield and economic benefits.

Study Design: The experiment was a 2 x 2 x 3 split-split plot laid out in randomized complete block design with N (0 and 37.5 kg N ha-1) in the main plot, P (0 and 13 kg P ha-1) in the sub-plot and lime (0, 0.77 and 1.55 tons lime ha-1) in sub-sub plot. 37.5 kg N and 13 kg P ha-1 are 50% of the recommended fertilizer rates for maize production in Kenya while 0.77 and 1.55 tons lime ha-1 are 25 and 50% of the actual requirement.

Place and Duration of Study: The study was carried on nutrient deficient acid soil on a small holder farmer (SHF) field in Busia County, Kenya during the years 2008 and 2009.

Methodology: Lime was applied once during the long rain in the year 2008 while P and N fertilizers each cropping season.

Results: Grain yield increased by 148 and 40% due to 50% of both the recommended N and P fertilizers, respectively and 5-17% due to 25-50% of the lime requirement. Majority (57-75%) of the production costs were due to inorganic inputs. Only combined application of 50% of both the recommended N and P fertilizers produced economically viable returns throughout the cropping period. Combination of 50 and 25% of the recommended P and lime, respectively and 50 and 25% of the recommended N and lime, respectively produced economically viable returns only during the second and third cropping seasons. A combination of 50% of both the recommended P and lime produced economically viable returns during the third cropping season only.

Conclusion: Small holder farmers producing crops on Kenya’s acid soils deficient in N and P such as in Busia County can realize economically viable returns by micro-dosing of N, P fertilizers and lime.

Keywords :

Micro-dosing; nitrogen; phosphorus; acid soil; lime; benefits.

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DOI : 10.9734/AJEA/2015/17984

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