Evaluation of Soil Mixtures for Increased Pemba Grass Productivity as a Landscaping Material
Samula, Kevin Devis
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Pemba grass [Stenataphrum dimidiatum] is widely used in Uganda as a lawn grass especially in the landscaping industry. Establishment of Uganda’s lawn grasses is based on local knowledge and soil tests which were designed for agronomic crops in a production culture. However due to the increasing demand for fast growing and quality lawn, there is need to find an ideal soil that has a balance of soil pH, texture, base saturation, NPK and organic carbon. With mixing soil types you achieve a soil which holds moisture but also drains well when you water the lawn, and It is able to retain nutrients and allow air flow, making it the most ideal soil for lawn grass (Pem-ba). The objectives of this study were to identify the fastest colonization rate of Pemba grass and to analyze the visual quality of Pemba grass under soil mixtures of top and black soil. Estab-lished pots of black and top soil mixtures were subjected to Pemba grass planting material for 6 weeks. Measurements included leaf emerging rate and visual ratings of Pemba grass quality. Colonization rate increased with addition of black soil to top soil, top soil gave the least coloni-zation rate of 0.05 leaves per cm2 whereas the 1:1 ratio gave 0.5 leaves per cm2. The best lawn quality was achieved with the 1:1 ratio of black soil and top soil (50%Black, 50%Top). Mixing Top soil with black soil gives a soil mixture which is highly nutritive thus it can support lawn growth and results into a healthy lawn, the mixture also has a good structure which retains nutri-ents, allows air flow and root growth resulting into fast lawn spreading rate. This is attributable to mixing of qualities of the two soils giving a soil with balance the required soil qualities.