An experiment was carried out for one season (2007) in the Experimental Farm of the Faculty of Agriculture at Shambat to investigate the response of Groundnut (Arachis hypogaeaL.) to phosphorus and organic fertilization under irrigation.

The treatments comprised two types of organic manures: farmyard manure (FYM) and chicken manure (CHM) at rate of (0, 10 tons/ha), two phosphorus levels (0, 50kg P2O5/ha) in form of triple super phosphate (48% P2O5) and three times of application for Organic manures two months and one month before sowing and at sowing. Phosphorus was applied at sowing.

         The design was Factorial Split-Plot design with four replications. The organic manure treatments were assigned to the main plots and phosphorus and its combinations treatments to the sub-plots. Parameters studied included: vegetative parameters (number of nodules/plant, nodules dry weight/plant, shoot and root dry weight/plant and number of branches/plant), reproductive parameters (days to 50% flowering and number of flowers/plant), yield and yield components (plant density, number of pod/plant, pod set(%), weight of pods/plant, shelling(%), pod yield(t/ha),hay yield(t/ha), and harvest index), and chemical composition (seed oil, protein and phosphorus contents).  

          Results showed that application of organic manures significantly increased number and weight of nodules/plant, shoot dry weight, oil, protein and phosphorus contents, while organic manures insignificantly increased root dry weight, number of branches/plant, days to50% flowering, number of flowers/plant, and yield and yield components. Also results showed that application of P significantly increased hay yield, protein and phosphorus contents. Phosphorus also insignificantly increased number and weight of nodules/plant, shoot and root dry weight, number of branches/plant, days to 50% flowering, number of flowers/plant, yield and yield components, and oil content. In addition, there were significant effects of the interaction between P and organic manures on seed oil, protein and phosphorus contents. 



Groundnut or peanut (Arachis hypogaea L.) also named monkeynut and earth nut, is a member of the family Leguminosae, sub family Papilionaceae and is a native of South America (Brazil or Peru). It was brought to Africa and Middle East by early travelers from its native area.

Groundnut is one of the most wide spread and important food legumes in the world and the third largest source of edible oil after soybean and sunflower. The seed contains 42-55% edible non-drying oil, 25-32% protein, and appreciable quantities of phosphorous, calcium and vitamins.

The groundnut oil is used as table oil and for the manufacture of soap, margarine and other products such as sweets and butter. The shell may be used as manure, animal feed, a source of energy and raw material source for many products (Vankatanarayana, 1952).

Groundnut hay contains about 7% protein and thus it is a valuable animal feed. The total annual world production amounts to about 25 million tons of unshelled nuts, 70% of which is contributed by India, China and U.S.A (Khidir, 1997). The main producing countries are India, Chaina, U.S.A., Sudan, and Indonesia, and in Africa Sudan, Senegal, Nigeria (FAO, 1998).

In the Sudan, groundnut is one of the main cash crops; it plays an important role in the economy of the Sudan (MANR, 1985). It is produced by two production systems (Khidir, 1997). In the rainfed sector, the crop is grown in small holdings on sandy soils of low fertility, mostly under low and erratic rainfall, where the early maturing Spanish types (Barberton and Sodari) used to dominate the area. In the irrigated sector, groundnut is produced on heavy black cracking clay of central Sudan, where only late-maturing Virginia types (Ashford, MH383, Medani, and Kiriz) are grown.

The main areas of production in the rainfed sector include South Darfur, South Kordofan, North Kordofan and Southern region (Equatoria), while the main areas of production in the irrigated sector include Gezira scheme, Rahad scheme, New Halfa scheme, Suki scheme, Blue and white Nile schemes.   

Under irrigated conditions, the average yield ranges between 1.5 and 2.5 tons/ha whereas the yield under rainfed conditions ranges between 0.2 and 0.8tons/ha (Maragan, 1996).

Research work on groundnut in the Sudan covers some aspects such as weed control (Ishag, 1971), plant population (Ibrahim, 1976), nitrogen and phosphorous fertilizers application (Nur and Gasim, 1974; Mohammed, 1980), and the effect of sulphur application (Salama, 1983; Hago and Salama, 1987; Hago and Salama, 1987). However, there is still a paucity of information in the area of groundnut nutrition, particularly organic manuring.

So, the main objective of this work was to study the response of groundnut to phosphorous and organic fertilization under irrigation.


1. Response of Groundnut to inorganic fertilizers:

Information about groundnut nutritional requirement are rather conflicting. While some researches reported the crop to be soil exhausting, others stated that it rarely requires fertilizer N since it fixes N. Moreover, groundnut is reported to utilize fertilizer residues from preceding crops (Sinha, 1991).

El Tahir (1997) showed that application of both nitrogen and phosphorous significantly increased number and weight of nodules per plant, number of branches, shoot dry weight per plant, protein content and phosphorous content.

Collins et al., (1986) observed that addition of phosphorus and sulphur increased nodule number on the sandy soil but not on the silt loam soil.

El Tahir (1997) showed that application of P did not significantly increase hay yield, number of flowers, seed oil and seed sulphur content.

Chapman and Carter (1975) reported that groundnut removes relatively large amounts of certain nutrients from the soil. However, like other legumes it can fix atmospheric nitrogen and therefore nitrogen fertilization is rarely required.

Chapman and Carter (1975) observed that a proper balance of phosphorus and nitrogen are essential for early maturity. However if the preceding crop before groundnut is well-fertilized, there will be no need to apply N, P or K.

Application of phosphorous significantly increased plant height, kernels/plant, dry weight per plant and shelling percentage. However, effect on number of branches/plant and 100-kernal weight was not significant. Phosphorus element is an essential nutrient for crop growth and high yield with good quality. In this aspect, Nasr-Alla, et al., (1998) reported that increasing the rate of PK as single or in combined application increased number of branches/plant, yield of pods/plant and yield of pods/fed of groundnut. 

Sinha (1970) observed that placement of super phosphate either in contact or 3-5cm below the seed was equally effective and significantly superior to broad cast application in the uptake of fertilizer phosphorus, but not in the dry matter weight or total phosphorus content of the plant.

In research stations as well as in trials on farmers fields, 20-60kg P2O5/ha has been found remunerative for oil seeds under a variety of conditions (Kulkarni, et al., 1986). In some situations, either no or little response of groundnut to P has been observed. Mukherjee, et al., (1991) observed that crops and P level had significant interaction on yield and yield components. Gobarah, et al., (2006) showed that increasing rate of phosphorus fertilizer from 30 to 60 kg P2O5/fed significantly increased vegetative growth, yield and its components as well as seed quality i.e. protein content and NPK percentages, while oil percentage did not reach the level of significance by increasing the P rate.

Ali and Mowafy, (2003) found that adding phosphorous fertilizer caused significant increase in seed yield and all its attributes. ElHabbasha, et al., (2005) reported that increasing phosphorus levels increased shoot dry weight, number of pods and seeds/plant , weight of pods and seeds/plant, 100-seed weight, seed and oil yields, oil percentage, seed protein content as well as NPK contents of groundnut. Correlation of available P with pod yield and nutrient uptake indicated that sub soil fertility made an important contribution to nutrient uptake by groundnut (Patil and Patel, 1985). Viarmant and Dhalinal (1970) reported that P uptake by groundnut was mainly from the upper 40cm of the soil and was high from flowering to the peg stage.

Devarajan and Kethan daraman (1982) observed that the highest pod yield of groundnut was obtained by adding 60kg P2O5 and 90 kg K2O/ha. El-far and Ramadan (2000) indicated that application of 46.6 kg P2O5 and 36kg K2O/fed gave the highest effect on yield and its attributes. Tomar, et al., (1990) observed significant increase in pod yield in groundnut with application of 40 Kg P2O5/ha, when rainfall was well distributed. 

Kulkorni, et al., (1986) stated that application of 50kg P2O5/ha increased the number and weight of nodules, N content, dry matter accumulation and pod yield of groundnut.

Budhar, et al., (1986) reported that response of irrigated groundnut to application of P in the range of 0-120kg P2O5/ha depended on soil P content.

Kumar and Ras (1990) observed that P application increased pod yield from 2.53 t/ha (control) to 7.94 t/ha; but there were no statistically significant differences in yield between P application rates.

Dubey, et al., (1991) observed that application of P increased N, P, K, Ca and Mg content but decreased S content in seeds. 



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