GROWTH AND YIELD OF CHICKPEA AS AFFECTED BY EM, RHIZOBIUM AND PHOSPHATE SOLUBILIZING BACTERIA

Life and Agriculture Sciences Journal (LASJ), Volume 2, Jan 2017

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Chickpea seeds and seedlings were treated with Rhizobium leguminosarum, Phosphate solubilizing bacteria, Pseudomonas and Effective microorganisms (EM) and Bokashi alone and in combinations. Plants were harvested during vegetative phase to determine chlorophyll, sugar, protein and the antioxidant enzymes, catalase and peroxidase and endogenous level of phytohormones from leaves of chickpea. Treatment with EM alone and in combination with Bokashi increased the shoot biomass, number of nodules, chlorophyll content, sugar content, peroxidase and catalase activity. Rhizobium used alone and in various combinations with EM and Bokashi exhibited significant increase over control. All the treatments exhibited significant increase in IAA and GA content of leaves. Combined treatment with R and EM can be implicated for crop improvement.

Author(s): S. AHMAD, A. BANO

EFFECT OF EUCALYPTUS LITTER ON GROWTH AND NODULATION OF VIGNA RADIATA

Life and Agriculture Sciences Journal (LASJ), Volume 2, Feb 2017

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Abstract The effect of Eucalyptus leaf litter on growth and root nodulation of mung bean (Vigna radiata {L.} R. Wilczek) was studied in pot experiment under natural conditions. There were five Eucalyptus litter treatments (0%, 8%, 16%, 24%, and 32% on v/v basis) applied in garden soil. The experiment was set up in completely randomized design with nine replicates for each treatment at each harvest. The four harvests were taken at the following developmental/physiological stages: start of flowering, start of pod formation, middle of pod formation, and seed maturity. A number of growth parameters were used to collect data at each harvest. The data was subjected to statistical analysis by applying Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) and the means were compared by Duncans Multiple Range Test (DMRT). The Eucalyptus litter treatments generally showed adverse effect on various parameters of vegetative growth, reproductive growth and root nodulation of mung bean. The adverse effect increased with increasing Eucalyptus litter treatments. The results highlighted negative effect of Eucalyptus plantation on the growth and yield of mung bean.

Author(s): F. SHAHEEN, J. I. MIRZA

Feeding of bears ? carnivores by phylogeny but omnivores by ecology

Life and Agriculture Sciences Journal (LASJ), Volume 2, Feb 2017

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into existence in the 19th century. Nevertheless, scientifically based knowledge on bear nutrition in terms of nutritional composition of natural food, digestion and requirements for growth, maintenance and reproduction are rare. The diet for different bear species in captivity ? with the exception of polar bears, sloth bears and giant pandas ? is often still very similar, consisting of fruits, mainly apples and pears, and vegetables, mainly carrots, to varying degrees supplemented by animal matters of different origin. This composition is based on the assumption of an omnivorous feeding style without considering species differences in terms of food composition and seasonal (and hormonally triggered) fluctuations in food intake. In consequence, nutrient composition and amounts of captive diets can differ significantly from what can be expected in the wild. In tropical bears, this feeding practice often results in obese bears, whereas bears of the moderate and higher altitudes are too lean during certain seasons. The feeding technique ? one main meal with or without several scatter feeds per day offered in similar quantities over the whole year - does apply more to a tropical carnivore than to an omnivorous carnivore with a simple digestive tract, but behavioural and physiological adaptations to survive on a mainly vegetarian diet in different climates. This technique is one of the causes for the development of stereotypic behaviours, which are frequently observed in ursids. The few scientific studies on ursid nutrition focus on digestion of the omnivorous brown bears and American black bears and the carnivorous polar bears. Similar studies are lacking for the other more tropical species with somewhat different food niches and specializations either towards more vegetarian (Andean bears) or more insectivorous diets (sun bear and sloth bear). The rapidly growing knowledge on feeding ecology of all ursid species in combination with their morphological features will be used to propose diets and feeding techniques which approach the species specific behavioural and nutritional requirements more closely. Examples of diets and feeding techniques will be provided for brown bears, polar bears, Andean and sun bears. Finally fields for research on bear feeding and nutrition will be briefly outlined.

Author(s): Lydia Kolter

THE TRIPLE S SYSTEM: A NEW METHOD OF PROVIDING SWEETPOTATO PLANTING MATERIAL TO FARMERS IN AREAS WITH A LONG DRY SEASON

Life and Agriculture Sciences Journal (LASJ), Volume 2, Jan 2017

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Farmers in areas of Africa that have a prolonged dry season tend to be chronically short of sweetpotato planting material at the beginning of the rains because the vines on the previous ware crops have dried and died back, so cuttings cannot be taken. Currently, they rely either on crops maintained in swamps and irrigated sites or wait till unharvested roots begin to sprout following the arrival of the rains. The former sources of planting material are expensive because they are costly to produce and are used for competing high-value horticultural crops; the latter are always late, weevil-infested and subject to damage, especially by grazing animals. The Triple S System (Sand storage and sprouting) is a modification of the farmers system of waiting for roots to sprout. Development involved testing different means of storing the roots during the dry season: in-ground, in pits, in dry ash or sand or using various botanicals and testing 2 times of watering. The system devised involves storing sweetpotato roots in dry sand in a large basin in a roofed building during the first part of the dry season, then planting them out in a protected garden near the home about 6 wks before the rains and watering them to promote vine production in time for the start of the rains. The experiences of farmers in Uganda and Tanzania with the system will be described. Benefits are ample early planting material which is protected and under farmer supervision.

Author(s): S. NAMANDA, R. W. GIBSON

CONSTRAINTS TO CROP PRODUCTION IN SOUTHEASTERN NIGERIA

Life and Agriculture Sciences Journal (LASJ), Volume 2, Jan 2017

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Feeding the increasing number of people around the world has remained a big challenge. Many countries in sub-Saharan Africa spend so much on food imports. This is mainly because of the lack of concerted efforts that are focused on wholesome exploitation of all available resources for crop production. This article presents a review of factors which have limited crop productivity in southeastern Nigeria. The agro-ecology of southeastern Nigeria include the coastal swamps in the south, the rainforest and then the derived savannah in the north. There are also the highlands of the Obudu mountain ranges in the eastern parts. These ecological zones have different climatic and edaphic conditions that are suitable to the growth of a variety of crops. Presently however the main crops in the prevailing cropping systems of this region are yams (Dioscoreae sp), sweet potato, cassava and maize whose yields from farmers fields have continued to fall over the years. Crops like rice (a major staple crop), fruit vegetables, Irish potato and others are either brought in from other ecological zones or imported. To increase food production, one first step is to increase crop yields in farmers fields. The next will be to have more arable land brought under cultivation. These are possible with appropriate land use planning. Other limitations to be overcome include: (i) ageing farmers (average age of farmers is 60 years); (ii) appropriate intercrop combinations; (iii) management of small farm holdings which are less than 500 squared metres; (iv) use of fertilizers, herbicides, insecticides, etc; (v) lack of access to credits; (vi) unavailability of soil test facilities; (vii) inadequate extension work; (viii) guaranteed market for farmers; and (ix) non-restriction of food imports among others. Increased crop productivity is not only attainable but sustainable if there is a holistic approach that collectively addresses these factors.

Author(s): I. J. OGOKE

ROLE OF PHOSPHATE SOLUBILIZING BACTERIA, RHIZOBIUM AND PGPR ON THE GROWTH AND YIELD OF SOYBEAN

Life and Agriculture Sciences Journal (LASJ), Volume 2, Jan 2017

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The investigation was aimed to determine the effect of inoculation of two different strains of phosphate solubilizing microorganisms (PSM I, strain CA 18 and PSM II, strain 54RB), plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (Enterobacter strain A) and Rhizobium (strain Tal 377) on yield, number and weight of nodules of soybean plant. The experiment was conducted under natural condition. Soybean seeds were coated with carrier-based inoculum of Rhizobium (strain Tal 377) prior to sowing while PSM I (strain CA 18), PSM II (strain 54RB) and Enterobacter were applied as broth culture to seedlings at two-leaf stage. The numbers of nodules were counted at flowering stage and the diameter of pink bacteroid tissue was measured. Both the strains of PSM were tested for their efficiency to solubilize the tricalcium phosphate in vitro. Colony diameter, halozone production and solubilization index of PSM II (strain 54RB) was greater than that of PSM I (strain CA 18). Beneficial effects of inoculation with Rhizobium (strain Tal 377), Enterobacter (strain A) and PSM I and II were obtained in all growth parameters on soybean. Co-inoculation with the above mentioned microbes resulted in maximum increase in plant biomass, root nodulation, number, weight and length of pods as compared to control (non-inoculated) and single. The coinoculation of PSM strain and Enterobacter was most effective and may be exploited in the production of biofertilizer.

Author(s): S. YASMEEN, A. BANO

LEGUME GENETIC RESOURCES ? PRESENT STATUS AND FUTURE PROSPECTS

Life and Agriculture Sciences Journal (LASJ), Volume 2, Feb 2017

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Food legumes, either summer or winters have been associated with marginal inputs and interest since their domestication. Pakistan enjoys four distinguish seasons a year that favour to produce winter as well as summer legumes. Winter legumes consists of chickpea (Cicer arietinum L.), lentils (Lens culinaris), peas (Pisum sativum), grass pea (Lathyrus sativus) and faba bean (Vicia faba), whereas summer legumes are mungbean (Vigna radiata), black gram (Vigna mungo), cowpea (Vigna unguiculata) and moth bean (Vigna oconotifolium). Common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris) is confined to high mountainous region of northern areas ranging the altitude 1000 to 2400 m. These legumes have been collected and preserved in the gene bank as active collection (short duration, 10 oC, 20 years), base collection (medium term, 5 oC, 50 years) and original collection (long term,?20 oC, more than 50 years). The number preserved in the gene bank is 2243 (chickpea), 805 (lentil), 645 (peas), 99 (lathyrus), 58 (faba bean), 712 (mungbean), 647 (black gram), 192 (cowpea), 66 (moth bean) and 102 (common bean). About 90% of summer legumes and 60% winter legumes have been characterized and evaluated. The germplasm of black gram (340 accessions), mungbean (260 accessions), lentil (350 accessions), chickpea (350 accessions), wild chickpea (40 accessions), peas (345 accessions), cowpea (173 accessions) and wild Vigna spp. (one accession) have been evaluated for total seed protein profiling. Except peas and wild chickpea, a low level of genetic diversity was observed for all the material evaluated. Forty accessions of wild chickpea were evaluated for total seed proteins that indicated high level of genetic diversity as compared with cultivated chickpea. This situation lead to use of DNA markers, therefore 40 accessions of black gram, 17 of lentil and 40 of pea were analyzed for RAPD that gave higher level of genetic diversity than SDS-PAGE. It was concluded that SDS-PAGE could confidently be used for identification of various species of legumes (Vigna radiata vs V. mungo; Lens vs Vicia), whereas this technique did not prove efficient for investigating intra-specific identification and it was assumed that SDS-PAGE may define a small portion of genetic diversity in legumes. Legume genetic resources are required to be characterized and evaluated along with protein and DNA markers for predicted utilization and better gene bank management. Comprehensive data will lead to establishment of core collections and enable researchers to eliminate duplications from the collections and to minimize labor and cost involved in crop improvement program. Low genetic diversity coupled with low stability is a characteristic for most of the legumes that could be minimized by developing a sound linkage between various stakeholder including CGIAR centers for legumes development program.

Author(s): A. GHAFOOR

Local food, global nutrient data: how do published values compare for commonly used diet ingredients?

Life and Agriculture Sciences Journal (LASJ), Volume 2, Feb 2017

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Animal diets that are known to be successful are often shared by colleagues in zoological collections, within and between countries. However diets are only comparable if the compositions of the ingredients are also equivalent. For manufactured products, such as pelleted feed, this can be confirmed relatively easily by the nutrient information label. Diets for zoo animals also include many perishable ingredients, including whole prey items, forage, fruit and vegetables. Fruit and vegetables (commonly referred to as produce) typically form a large part of the fresh weight and financial cost of zoo diets. Is the produce available in different parts of the world is nutritionally equivalent? Data on food composition is published by many countries and was used to make this comparison. The produce items compared are those most popularly used by Chester Zoo, based on analysis of fruit and vegetable usage over a 12 month period (April 2008-March 2009). The ten most used fruit and vegetables (in kg fresh weight) were identified and data on their composition compared using tables published for 16 countries in Europe, the Americas, Asia and Australasia.

Author(s): Andrea L. Fidgett, Sarah-Jayne Forster

MORPHOLOGICAL STUDY OF TENDRILS IN FAMILY CUCURBITACEAE

Life and Agriculture Sciences Journal (LASJ), Volume 2, Mar 2017

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Members of family Cucurbitaceae possess either simple or branched tendrils that occupy lateral position with respect to other organs in the axil of the leaf. The transverse section of tendril shows five ridges alternating with five furrows. The distribution of tissues is same in all species. The vascular bundles are bicollateral. The vascular supply to the tendril suggested some relationship between the axillary flower and tendril and can be regarded as a modified first lateral branch of the floral axis. The similarity in the anatomy of the basal part of the flower and that of the tendril imply support this conclusion.

Author(s): A. A. DASTI, S. SAIMA, S. NIAZ

ROLE OF PROTECTION IN REHABILITATION OF RANGELAND

Life and Agriculture Sciences Journal (LASJ), Volume 2, Feb 2017

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A case study was conducted in Aghberg rangeland (Quetta District) during 2005 ? 2006. Two protected sites (without fences) were established by community participation and with collaboration of UNDP and non-protected sites were public grazing area on the immediate vicinity. It was observed that species composition, diversity, total ground cover and dry matter were significantly increased in protected sites when compared to non-protected sites. It appears that rainfall limiting the abundance of species and biomass production during 2006. But the losses provided by local inhabitants and nomads were more severe due to uprooting all the plants for fuel wood and other purposes. It is suggested that community participation can play a key role in rangeland rehabilitation if they sustain these ranges for longer period.

Author(s): M. J. DURRANI, M. RAZAQ