Navigation Links
Vermicompost from pig manure grows healthy hibiscus

RALEIGH, NC Vermicomposting, the practice of using earthworms to turn waste into nutrient-rich fertilizer, can be an economical, organic waste management practice. During vermicomposting, earthworms and microorganisms stabilize organic waste in an aerobic, moist environment. The resulting product, called vermicompost (VC), or worm castings, provides commercial and amateur growers an environmentally friendly alternative to conventional substrate additives for producing many varieties of container-grown plants. A research team recently experimented with pine bark amended with vermicompost derived from pig manure to see if this organic alternative can produce healthy hibiscus.

Michelle S. McGinnis, lead researcher, explained that the purpose of the study (published in HortScience) was to determine if conventional nursery crop inputs could be replaced by commercially available vermicompost for hibiscus production. VC is currently marketed as a pine bark amendment to progressive nursery crop producers. Reported benefits include greater plant growth and flower production, improved water use efficiency, and sufficient levels of some plant-available nutrients.

The scientists grew hibiscus (Hibiscus moscheutos 'Luna Blush' L.) in containers containing pine bark amended with sand, dolomitic limestone and micronutrient package (PBS), or pine bark amended with 20% VC. Plants were topdressed with one of three controlled-release fertilizers (CRFs): only nitrogen; nitrogen and potassium; or nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium (NPK). The PBS + NPK treatment, which was supplied with conventional nursery crop nutrient inputs, served as the control treatment to represent the industry standard.

Plants were harvested at 35 and 56 days after potting. Total plant nutrient contents of phosphorous, calcium, magnesium, sulfur, iron, manganese, zinc, copper, and boron were equivalent or greater by hibiscus-grown pine bark amended with vermicomposted pig manure (20% by volume) compared with plants grown with conventional nursery crop nutrient inputs. All three 20VC treatments averaged 58% and 40% greater plant dry weight than PBS + NPK, respectively, and 93% more flowers than PBS + NPK at 56 days after potting.

The research also established that the vermicompost treatment did not supply potassium equivalent to conventional CRFs; the authors recommend the addition of fertilizer potassium (K) to VC at a 20% amendment rate.

All treatments used equivalent volumes of water. "The drawback of greater effluent nutrient content when using a VC amended substrate could be offset by implementing best management practices, such as the reduction of leaching fraction and/or containment or capture of the effluent", noted McGinnis.

The study suggests that dolomitic lime, sulfated micronutrients, and phosphorous can be eliminated as substrate additives for hibiscus production.


Contact: Michael W. Neff
American Society for Horticultural Science

Related biology news :

1. Composted dairy manure in foliage plant production
2. Transport behavior of E. coli varies depending on manure source
3. NIST chemists get scoop on crude oil from pig manure
4. New insights into the fate of antiparasitics in manure and manured soils
5. Manure management reduces levels of antibiotics and antibiotic resistance genes
6. Plastic that grows on trees, part two
7. MIT: New tissue scaffold regrows cartilage and bone
8. NIH Clinical and Translational Science Consortium grows to 39 members
9. To fight the cancer before the tumor grows
10. CU researcher engineers sorghum that grows in poisonous soils
11. How nutrition affects healthy aging
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/16/2015)... 2015  Synaptics Inc. (NASDAQ: SYNA ), ... announced expansion of its TDDI product portfolio with ... and display driver integration (TDDI) solutions designed to ... TDDI products add to the previously-announced TD4300 ... resolution), and TD4322 (FHD resolution) solutions. All four ...
(Date:11/12/2015)... --  Growing need for low-cost, easy to use, ... the way for use of biochemical sensors for ... clinical, agricultural, environmental, food and defense applications. Presently, ... applications, however, their adoption is increasing in agricultural, ... on improving product quality and growing need to ...
(Date:11/10/2015)... , Nov. 10, 2015 ... biometrics that helps to identify and verify the ... is considered as the secure and accurate method ... of a particular individual because each individual,s signature ... results especially when dynamic signature of an individual ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/24/2015)... Nov. 24, 2015 /PRNewswire/ - Aeterna Zentaris Inc. ... that the remaining 11,000 post-share consolidation (or 1,100,000 ... (the "Series B Warrants") subject to the previously ... November 23, 2015, which will result in the ... effect to the issuance of such shares, there ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... LAVAL, QC , Nov. 24, 2015 /CNW Telbec/ - ... the "Corporation") announced today that Mr. Pierre Laurin , ... a corporate presentation at the upcoming Piper Jaffray 27 th ... York Palace Hotel, on December 1-2, 2015. ... be available for one-on-one meetings throughout the day. The presentation ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 24, 2015 , ... Whitehouse Laboratories ... Laboratory. The new stand-alone facility will be strictly dedicated to basic USP 61, ... and existing clients the chance to have complete chemistry and micro testing performed by ...
(Date:11/23/2015)... ... November 23, 2015 , ... Shimadzu Corporation announces that it ... Unified Chromatography system. The award from R&D magazine recognizes Shimadzu’s Nexera UC system ... in the analytical and testing category. R&D Magazine chose the Nexera UC system ...
Breaking Biology Technology: