Performance Response of Brachiaria Grass to Zinc Sulphate Fertilizer Soil Application Rates

  • L. K. Mworia University of Nairobi
  • D. W. Kaindi University of Nairobi
  • S. M. Mutua Ministry of Agriculture
  • J. Wamiti University of Nairobi
  • J. M. Muia Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization

Abstract

The content of micronutrient in grass is important for quality improvement of livestock feed. The objective of this study was to determine the response of Brachiaria grass to zinc-enriched fertilizer. The experiment was conducted in randomized complete block design (RCBD) with four replications. Zinc Sulphate was applied at four treatment levels comprising T1 = 0% Zn (ZnSO4 at 0 kg/ha.), T2 = 50% Zn (ZnSO4 at 45.6 kg/ha, T3 = 100% Zn (ZnSO4 at 91.2 kg/ha) and T4 = 150% Zn (ZnSO4 at 136.8 kg/ha). Zinc fertilizer treatment had a significant effect on zinc concentration in Brachiaria grass at p<0.001. Significant differences were observed among all the four mean concentrations of zinc in grass except between 0% and 50% and between 100% and 150% Zn. The results showed that the fertilization of Brachiaria grass with Zinc fertilizer application at 100% (91.2 kg/ha) level resulted in the optimal Zinc uptake and Zinc concentration in Brachiaria biomass. Considering the input cost of applying Zinc-fortified fertilizers, application of ZnSO4 at the rate of 91.2 kg/ha (100% concentration) is recommended. Consequently, Zinc uptake in bio-fortified Brachiaria grass correlate with increasing levels of Zinc fertilizer application in the soil. The application of Zinc-fortified fertilizers in Brachiaria production will enhance fodder quality and yields to meet the increasing demand for animal feeds and increase food production for the growing population.

Published
2023-11-29
How to Cite
Mworia, L. K., Kaindi, D. W., Mutua, S. M., Wamiti, J., & Muia, J. M. (2023). Performance Response of Brachiaria Grass to Zinc Sulphate Fertilizer Soil Application Rates. East African Agricultural and Forestry Journal, 87(3&4), 6. Retrieved from https://www.kalro.org/www.eaafj.or.ke/index.php/path/article/view/658