Evaluating the Effect of Integrated Use of Farm Yard Manure and Urea on Major Soil Chemical Properties in the Low Land Irrigated Areas of North western Tigray, Ethiopia

Gebremedhn Gebrtsadkan, Dereje Assefa


Soil fertility deterioration is becoming a major constraint for higher crop production in Tigray. The prevailing higher prices of inorganic fertilizer along with low nutrient value and shortage of organic nutrient sources like Farm Yard Manure (FYM) has become a main problem in managing soil fertility problems, especially for resource poor farmers. So, integrated use of organic and inorganic plant nutrient sources help to overcome problems with the sole application and have more rewarding on maintaining better soil fertility. Based on this, a field experiment was conducted to study the effect of integrated use of organic (FYM) and inorganic (Urea) plant nutrient sources on soil fertility improvements in Tselemti wereda, May ani site during the 2012/13 off season time. Organic (FYM) and inorganic (Urea) nutrient sources was integrated in different proportions to supply 60Kgha-1 of Nitrogen (N) from both sources at different ratios. The treatment combinations are T1 (control or with no fertilizer), T2 (100%IF), T3 (25% FYM+75%IF), T4 (50%FYM+50IF), T5 (75%FYM+25%IF) & T6 (100%FYM).Phosphorus was applied at a recommended rate in the form of TSP, adjusted on the basis of phosphorus present in the soil and FYM. The experiment was arranged in RCB Design with four replications per treatment. Tomato (variety; Roma VF) was planted in rows. FYM used for the experiment was well decomposed and one year old. Top soil (0-30cm)and FYM were sampled before transplanting tomato seedlings and similarly after harvest soil was sampled and analyzed for its major chemical composition in the laboratory.The results of the experiment showed that the integrated use of FYM and Urea in different proportions significantly increased soil pH, Organic carbon, CEC, ava.P, Total N and ava.K.(p< 0.05). Comparing fertilized treatments most of the soil parameters were better in treatments where N from FYM source was above 50%.The overall study revealed that a combined application of FYM with Urea at (25:75 and 50:50 ratios) not only significantly improve soil fertility but also  increase  marketable tomato yield and economic profit. Therefore, it is recommended for tomato producers of Tselemti wereda for profitable tomato yield and sustainable soil fertility.

Keywords: FYM, Inorganic, Integrated, Organic, Soil fertility, Tomato, Urea, Yield, Sole application

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ISSN (Paper)2224-3208 ISSN (Online)2225-093X

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