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Phenology and Maize Crop Stand in Response to Mulching and Nitrogen Management

Phenology and Maize Crop Stand in Response to Mulching and Nitrogen Management

Muhammad Ibrahim and Ahmad Khan*

Department of Agronomy, The University of Agriculture, Peshawar, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan.


Poor crop stand affects crop growth and development. Understanding the role of mulching techniques and nitrogen management in crop stand and phenological occurrence is not well understood. Therefore field studies were conducted at Agronomy Research Farm, the University of Agriculture Peshawar-Pakistan to quantify the effects of mulching techniques and nitrogen management on maize (Zea mays L) phenology and crop stand in 2013 and 2014. Treatments included mulching techniques (i.e. no-mulch, residue, transparent and blue colour plastic) and 250 kg N ha-1 sources (control, 100, 70, 50, 0% from FYM with the remaining from urea). Phenological stages (tasseling, silking, and physiological maturity) occurred earlier in no-mulch practice, but emergence in plastic mulching. Plants took less days to emergence (6 days) in 70% FYM, however, tasseling (45 days), silking (49 days) and physiological maturity (94 days) arrived earlier in no-fertilized plots. Tasseling, silking and maturity delayed with increasing urea N proportion in residue or plastic mulching. The days’ differences for silking across the years were apparent in residue mulching than plastic mulching. Plastic mulching had improved emergence m-2, the application of 50% FYM had increased plant at harvest (2%) over control (no-fertilized) plots. In conclusion, the plastic mulching had increased emergence. Thus a more optimum source of 50% N from farmyard and 50% from urea would be more suitable for appropriate phenological stages and improved crop stand.


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Sarhad Journal of Agriculture


Vol. 37, Iss. 2, Pages 331-713


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