Using organic amendments to improve productivity of cucumber plants grown under sandy substrate culture

Document Type : Original Article


Two experiments were carried out at Central Laboratory for Agriculture Climate (CLAC), Agriculture Research Centre, Egypt during the two successive spring seasons of 2012 and 2013 under unheated double span plastic house (18 x 60 x 3.2 m), to study the ability of improving sand culture via organic amendments cucumber production (Cucumis sativus L. cv. Dp164 F1). Three different fertigation types (nutrient solution, compost tea and vermi- liquid) combined with three levels of commercial compost and vermicompost mixed with sand as a substrate culture at 10, 20 and 30 %in addition to the control treatment (100% sand) were performed.  Plant height, number of leaves, leaves area; chlorophyll reading, total yield, N, P and K content in leaves of cucumber were measured at 90 days during the growth season of cucumber. Obtained results of the effect of nutrient solution sources indicated that the chemical nutrient solution recorded the highest vegetative growth traits and yield characteristics. In addition, results indicated that increasing commercial compost and vermicompost rate from 0 to 20 % had positive significant effects on vegetative growth, yield and macro nutrient content of cucumber plant, while increasing the rate up to 30 % had no subsequent improving effect. Sand + vermicompost (80: 20 v/v) followed by sand + vermicompost (70: 30 v/v) recorded the highest values of the vegetative growth characteristics during the two seasons compared to other treatments. Sand + vermicompost (80: 20 v/v) combined with chemical nutrient solution had the highest values of early and total yield (kg / m2).


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