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Effect of Palm oil mill effluent and Npk 15:15:15 fertilizers on the growth and yield of soya bean.


Soyabean (Glycine max (L) Merr produces high quality oil which is highly digestible, high in saturated fatty acids and contains no cholesterol. Soyabean seeds have 40-42 % of its weight as high quality protein with substantial levels of most essential amino acids which being non- synthesizable by humans, must be supplied by diet (Singh et al, 1987). Carbohydrates content of the seed averages 38% with total soluble sugars amounting to about 10 %. The oligosaccharide fraction, which causes flatulence, is low, thereby making soyabean an idea food for infants. After oil extraction, the cake residue constitutes a variable source of protein for livestock feeds.

Soyabean has occupied third place in oil seed crops of the world. It enriches thesoil through symbiotic nitrogen fixation and leaves about 30-40 kg N/ hectare for succeeding crops (Saxena and Chandel, 1992). Soyabean production in Nigeria was for many years centered on the Savannah ecological zone where soils are characteristically slow in nitrogen and phosphorous (Chiezy and Yayock, 1991). It is now widely grown in the middle belt states of Benue, Kogi, Niger, Kwara and Kaduna (Pal and Olufajo, 1991) and in the rainforest zone of Ondo, Oyo and Northern parts of Delta State (Anon, 1983, Jackai, 1987). By 1980, Nigeria had over 197,000 hectares of land devoted to Soyabean production of 70, 000 metric tones (Anon, 1980) and Yield of 300-400kg/ha (Apeji, 1988). It is generally recongnised that increased food production to feed the world's growing population cannot be met any longer through expansion of cultivated areas but rather through intensification of agricultural productivity. This would hardly be achieved without among other things, development and adoption of high yielding crop varieties, improved agronomic practices and the use of fertilizers. This necessitated this study.

Inorganic fertilizers are readily available for uptake upon application while the organic form of nutrients is slowly available (Leo, Espinoza et al, 2001). Orellana et al (1990) reported that application of fertilizers at the rate of 20kgN with 35Kg P2O/ hectare gave greater number of leaves and branches in soya bean with increasing rates of P2O5 (0, 40 or 80kg/ha) Singh and Saxena (1972), in a study on effect of inoculation and NPK fertilizers on soyabean reported that lower rates of nitrogen (25kg/ha) decreased grain yield of soyabean, while higher rates tend to restore yield. But that was not economical for farmers. Nimje and Seth (1988) reported that inorganic and organic sources gave higher productivity of soyabean when applied in combination than when applied alone. Inorganic fertilizers which are one of the important inputs for increased food production, are expensive and developing countries can hardly afford to meet their high costs.

Kihanda (1996) reported that farmers had deviced ways of restoring and maintaining soil fertility which included application of organic or inorganic fertilizer to offset the nutrients removed by the crops, recycling part of the nutrients through the use of manure or leave the crop residue in the field to decompose and offset soil organic matter losses. William et al (1991) recommended organic application on cabbage production in the tropics based on the fact that organic manure improves soil water availability through retention, aeration and better response of crops to fertilizers. Titiloye et al (1985) used different organic wastes or manures in Nigeria, these include sewage, poultry droppings, cocoa husk and sawdust in growing maize and reported a significant effect on yield. Inorganic fertilizers supply the needed nutrients elements through microbial assistance and improved soil physical properties (Odu and Mba, 1991). A major constraint to the utilization of animal manure appears to be related to the high quantities required to make any significant impact on crop yields. A good management practice could be to supplement the manure with some organic fertilizers. Athough both nutrient sources have advantages and disadvantages (FAO, 1978, Dal).

In agricultural practices, there is need for additional nutrient for optimum crop performance with the use of effluents. Effluents are organic manures applied to agricultural land. They maybe produced on the farm or supplied from other sources such as treated sewage, sludge and some industrial wastes. Liquid waste called effluent and solid waste are produced by food processing plants and other types of agricultural factories such as vegetable oil factories, cane sugar factories, palm oil factories and breweries (Tan, 2000).

Palm oil mill effluent (POME) is one of the byproducts released from an oil palm mill. POME is a brownish oily liquid obtained after extraction of palm oil. It is obtained from two main stages in the palm oil mill factory; sterilization and clarification. The oily liquid present in the fruit forms the effluent. POME contains relatively high amount of plant nutrients particularly potassium (K), nitrogen (N), magnesium (Mg) and calcium (Ca) but its quite low in phosphorous (P) Lim et al, 1993.

Treated effluent of chemical industry applied at 10ml/volume in water was found to be effective in promoting germination, growth, chlorophyll and protein contents of vigna radiate and vigna mumgo and the production of Napier grass increased significantly with rubber effluent (Tan et al, 1975). A four year tolerance trial with rubber with more frequent applications gave similar encouraging results. The tree grew as well as or better than similar tree growing along side, which were receiving the standard plantation fertilizer (Wood, 1977). Chan and Chooi (1982) also found out that when the effluents are dried into sludge cake (40 % moisture), stages of perennial crops in the field and when sprayed also advanced maturity of maize, sorghum and soyabean.

Materials and methods

The experiments were conducted on a parcel of land located at kilometer 11 along Benin Lagos road, Benin City temperatures during the growing period range between 20.5 -34.2[degrees]C with an average of 27.3[degrees]C. The rainy season starts in May and ends 15 October (Table 1). The soils are sandy, loam and slightly acidic (Table 2). The portion of land for the experiment had been left fallow for one year and was over grown with spear grass (Imperata cylindrical) and siam weed (Chromoleana odorata). Variety of soyabean used is Tax 1440. The palm oil mill effluent used was analyzed and the chemical composition shown (Table 2).


Six treatments were arranged in a complete randomized block designed and replicated three times. Each replicate was separated from each other by 1m pathway for easy agronomic operations. The trial was planted on a fiat leveled land, each experiments plot measured 3 3.6m.

Soyabeans were planted in May and November, 2004, for the first and second experiments respectively. Two seeds were planted per stand at a depth of 5 cm at a spacing of 60cm between rows and 10cm within rows and later thinned to 1 seedling per stand a week after planting .The trial received 0, 100, 200 and 300 kg/ ha NPK and 100 and 300 kg /ha packaged organic fertilizer two weeks before planting. Weeds were controlled manually at 3 and 7 wks after planting .The second experiment was under sprinkle irrigation because it was planted in the dry season.

Data Collection

The parameter on five randomly selected plants measured were plant height (cm), number of leaves per plant, leaf area (cm2) and number of branches per plant. At harvest, number of pods/net plot, weight of pods/net plot, weight of grains/net plot and shelling percentage were computed.

The data collected were subjected to analysis of variance (ANOVA) as described by Gomeze and Gomez (1984) and significant differences among treatment means were separated using the least significant difference (LSD) test (Steel and Torie, 1980).

Results and Discussion

Vegetative Trait

There were significant differences in the performance of treatments of soyabean and the control in the cropping season. There was increase in the vegetative traits of soyabean at various stages of growth when compared with the control in both experiments (Tables 5 and 6). However, the applications of inorganic fertilizers tend to enhanced more vegetative growths when compared with the palm oil mill effluent. Application of 200 kg/ha NPK fertilizers tend to be more favorable under this application and had higher plant height, number of branches, number of leaves and leaf area. The increase in the vegetative traits of plants treated with moderate application of NPK 200 kg/ha maybe attributed to internodes elongation and other nutrients received by the plant from inorganic sources. This result is comparable to the findings of Leo Espinoza (2001) who reported that nutrients uptake upon application while the organic forms of nutrients are slowly available. Orellana et al, 1990 also agreed that moderate application of fertilizer gave greater number of vegetative traits as seen with those in which POME is applied could be due to the slow release of nutrients in the organic form to plants. Another reason could be non availability of some nutrients which may have been fixed in the soil. This confirms the findings of Tisdale et al, (1985) who reported that the availability of Mg decreased as the pH approaches neutrality. The lowest plant height, number of leaves, number of branches, leaf area as seen with the control may be due to the fact that plants had to depend mainly on the intrinsic soil fertility.

Reproductive trait

There was a significant difference amongst treatment (P [less than or equal to] 0.05) in the performance of the soya bean plant (Tables 7 and 8). Number of pods, weights of pods, weights of grains and grain yield (Kg/ha) increased with the application of inorganic fertilizer up to the highest yield (200 kg/ha NPK). Increase rate application of POME also increased the vegetative traits. Grain yield of soyabean treated with inorganic fertilizer were significantly higher than yields treated with POME and the control. The highest grain yield (3213.33kg/ha) was recorded with crops treated with 200kg/ha inorganic fertilizer. This observation corresponds with the reports of Jayapaul and Ganesaraja (1970), as well as Kumar and Rao (1971) that moderate application of nitrogen and phosphorous increase the number of pods per plant, seeds per pod, seed weight and seed yield of soyabean. Increase in grain yield of soyabean due to nitrogen applications may probably be as a result of the vital role of nitrogen in the synthesis of chlorophyll and amino acids which are indispensible ingredients of the process of autotrophization. Nitrogen influences the grain production of photosynthates and their increased translocation to reproductive traits.

Results of this study suggest that moderate application of inorganic fertilizer has a comparative yield advantage over application of organic fertilizer. However, high level of POME may be applied as the plants responded to the highest level applied in the two experiments reported. However, additional studies are needed to confirm the present results.


Inorganic fertilizer increased soyabean growth and subsequent yield more than POME. This could be attributed to the fact that fertilizers are readily available for plant uptake upon application while the organic forms of nutrients are slowly available. Based on the results of this study, it is recommended that moderate rates of NPK fertilizer (100 or 200 kg/ha) can be applied to boost soyabean production.


The authors are grateful to the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Ibadan and Agricultural Development Programme, Edo State, Nigeria for providing the seeds for the research work.


Anon, A, 1983. Guide to soyabeans production in Bendel State. Bendel Agriculture Development Programme Folder, pp: 334.

Apeji, S.A., 1988. Pest of cowpea and soya beans in Nigeria. Federal Department of Pest Control Service, Kaduna, 33.

Chiezey, U.F. and J.Y. Yayock, 1991. Performance of soyabean (Glycine max merr) in the northern guinea savanna as affected by variety and potassium fertilizer levels. Niger. Agric. J., 26: 45-48.

Chan and Chooi, 1982. Ponding system for palm oil mill effluent Treatment (PORIM). Regional workshop in Palm oil mill Technology and effluent treatment, Kuala lumpar. Malaysia Society of soil Science, 58: 185-192.

Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), 1991. Review of literature on Agro-social--economic aspects of mixed cropping sub Sahara Africa, pp: 49.

Gomez, K.A. and A.A. Gomez, 1984. Statistical procedure 2nd Ed., N.Y. John Wiley and Sons, pp: 680. Jackai, L.E.N., 1987. Large plot Entomological evaluation of elite soyabean varieties in Mokwa, Nigeria. In

Oyekan PO and Olufajo OO Eds. Proceeding of the 7th Annual soyabean conference Ahmadu Bello University Zaria, pp: 115-117.

Jayapaul, P. and V. Granesaraja, 1990. Studies of response of soya bean varieties to N and P. Indian J. Agron, 35: 329-330.

Kihanda, F.M., 1996. The role of farmyard manure in improving maize production in the sub- humid highlands of central Kenya Ph.D Thesis university of reading, U.K, pp: 7-19.

Kumar, K. and K.V.P. Rao, 1991. N and P levels in relationship to dry matter production, P uptake and their partitioning in soya bean. Annals Agric. Res., 12: 270-272.

Leo, E., 2001. Effect of fertilizer on grain yield of soya bean. Eur. J. Agron., 13: 212-221.

Lim, C.H, T.C. PNG, K.W. Chan and S.Y. Chooi, 1993. Land Application of Digested palm oil Mill effluent (POME) by sprinkle system. Procedings of the seminar on land, application of palm and rubber factory effluents (Lim, KH; Bachik A.J. and Poon YC eds). Malaysia Society of Soil Science, pp: 72-79.

Nimje. P.M. and J. Seth, 1988. Effect of P and FYM on nutrient uptake by soyabean. Indian J. Agron, 33: 134-142.

Odu, C.T. and C.C. Mba,1991. Microbiology consideration for maximizing nutrient availability through organic fertilization. Proceedings of Natural Organic fertilizer Seminar, Kaduna, pp: 67-80.

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(1) Falodun E.J, Osaigbovo A.U and (2) Remison S.U

(1) Department of Crop Science, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Benin, Benin City, Nigeria. (2) Department of Crop Science, Faculty of Agriculture, Ambrose Ali University, Ekpoma, Edo State, Nigeria.

Corresponding Author: Falodun E.J, Department of Crop Science, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Benin, Benin City, Nigeria. E-mail:
Table 1: Meterological conditions at NIFOR Benin City during
the period of the trial, May 2004-January 2005

                         May      June     Jul      Aug      Sept

Total Rainfall (mm)      323.4    355.7    214.3    398.6    293.7
Min. Temp.([degrees]C)   23.0     22.8     21.8     21.8     23.3
Max.( [degrees]C)        31.5     30.7     30.7     29.8     31.2
Rel. Humidity            84.8     87.8     81.5     90.0     85.2
Solar Rad.               384.9    359.6    2943     294.8    320.1
Mean Sunshine (hr/day)   4.5      4.2      2.7      1.4      3.8

                         Oct      Nov      Dec      Jan

Total Rainfall (mm)      280.7    32.3     5.0      32.2
Min. Temp.([degrees]C)   22.9     23.4     20.5     22.5
Max.( [degrees]C)        32.5     33.2     34.2     33.4
Rel. Humidity            82.4     83.2     75.5     74.4
Solar Rad.               385.2    358.2    389.2    364.1
Mean Sunshine (hr/day)   4.2      41       6.3      7.1

Table 2: Physical and chemical properties of soils
from experimental site

Soil Variable          Exp 1          Exp 2

Clay (%)               3.00           4.50
Silt (%)               1.80           3.50
Sand (%)               95.20          92.20
Textural group         Sandy loam     Sandy loam
Ph (1.1)               4.80           4.80
Organic Carbon (%)     1.12           1.66
C/N                    43.60          60.00
Nitrogen (%)           0.10           0.21
Phosphorous (Mg/kg)    3.78           9.80
Sodium (Cmol/kg)       0.18           0.63
Potassium (Cmol/kg)    0.10           0.83
Calcium (Cmol/kg)      2.10           2.10
Magnesium (Cmol/kg)    0.80           0.32

Table 3: Chemical composition of palm oil mill effluent (POME)

Nutrients                      Composition

pH                             4.8
Ash                            13.00
Carbon (C)                     2.30 - 2.60
Nitrogen (N)                   1.80 - 2.30
Phosphorus (P)                 2.40
Potassium (K)                  3.05
Magnesium (Mg)                 1.07
Calcium (Ca)                   0.25
Sodium (Na)                    0.13

Table 4: Effects of Fertilizer application on Vegetative
Traits, Experiment 1

Treatment         Plant height          No. of leaves

Control           161.00                132.30
NPK 100(kg/ha)    220.00                181.60
NPK 200(kg/ha)    227.60                221.30
NPK 300(kg/ha)    196.60                190.00
POME (5t/ha)      176.30                173.60
POME (10t/ha)     180.30                157.60
Mean              193.03                177.68
LSD (0.05)        26.57                 56.42
CV (%)            4.85                  8.00

Treatment         Leaf area             Number of branches

Control           31937.22              20.60
NPK 100(kg/ha)    61593.06              29.60
NPK 200(kg/ha)    80176.99              34.00
NPK 300(kg/ha)    73245.00              33.00
POME (5t/ha)      62861.18              26.60
POME (10t/ha)     41212.26              27.00
Mean              59121.11              27.85
LSD (0.05)        82.85                 5.26
CV (%)            7.42                  10.18

Table 5: Effects of Fertilizer application on Vegetative
Traits, Experiment 2

Treatment         Plant height          No. of leaves

Control           161.30                128.30
NPK 100(kg/ha)    219.30                246.60
NPK 200(kg/ha)    228.30                188.60
NPK 300(kg/ha)    197.00                190.00
POME (5t/ha)      174.60                191.30
POME (10t/ha)     180.60                150.30
Mean              193.03                177.68
LSD (0.05)        26.58                 54.42
CV (%)            4.9                   12.78

Treatment         Leaf area             Number of branches

Control           30971.60              20.60
NPK 100(kg/ha)    80687.05              28.60
NPK 200(kg/ha)    68386.30              33.60
NPK 300(kg/ha)    75202.00              32.60
POME (5t/ha)      57062.30              27.30
POME (10t/ha)     43276.90              26.30
Mean              59121.11              27.85
LSD (0.05)        81.57                 5.25
CV (%)            7.37                  10.06
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Title Annotation:Original Article
Author:Falodun, E.J; Osaigbovo, A.U; Remison, S.U.
Publication:Advances in Natural and Applied Sciences
Article Type:Report
Geographic Code:6NIGR
Date:May 1, 2010
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