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Increasing crop productivity in cassava by fertilizing production of planting material

The nutritional content of cassava ( Manihot esculenta Crantz) stems changed with different levels of soil fertility. These changes affected the quality of stakes (planting material) obtained from these stems, which, in turn, affected yields of subsequent crops. According to the five levels of fertilization used, mother plants had different heights and vigor, and stems produced stakes of different weights. Both the concentration and content of N, P, and K in the stems varied with fertilization treatment, being least with no nutrients applied to the soil. Sprouting rate was strongly influenced by the N, P, and K contents in the stakes. The lowest sprouting rate occurred with stakes that received no K, but moderate levels of N and P. Sprouting potential was not affected by planting stakes in fertilized or unfertilized soils, however, indicating that nutritional reserves contained in the stakes was more important. Stakes from plots with moderate level of N, P, and K application resulted in plants that had the greatest leaf area, foliage and stems suited as propagation material. Plants produced from these stakes also had the highest total root yield and highest production of commercial roots in both fertilized and unfertilized soils. The increase in yield in the subsequent crop attributed to stake quality was more than the increase due to fertilization. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Field Crops Research Elsevier

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