Effect of Black Soldier Fly Larvae Compost and NPK Fertilizer on the Growth and Yield Components of Hybrid Maize
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Organic wastes from decomposing plant remains collected from domestic places contain both macro and micro elements that are crucial in normal plant growth and development. Improved soil productivity has been observed in soils that have organic matter content as it has; numerous soil living organisms, good water holding capacity, structure, texture, CEC, and aeration. Currently, less statistical information to guide farmers on the quantity of organic wastes required per acre, its effect on maize growth and yield potential is documented in Uganda hence making them under utilized. The purpose of this study was therefore; to investigate whether orgainic wastes decomposed by black soldier fly maggots have the capacity to enhance the productivity of hybrid maize and this was through; determining plant height, number of leaves at different growth stages and also determing the yield performance of hybrid maize. In the study, a field experinment was set up at Makerere University Agricultural Research Institute – Kabanyolo (MUARIK) using a randomized complete block design (RCBD) with three replications. Two main sources of nutrients were used (BSFLC and NPK) at levels of 0, 40, 80 and 120 kg N/ha. The application of BSFLC to hybrid maize at the rates of 40, 80 and 120 kg N/ha siginificantely (p<0.05) increased the number of leaves per plant at 100DAP and plant height, decreased the number of days to anthesis, silking and physiological maturity and siginificantely (p<0.05) increased the number of kernel rows per cob, cob clength and consequently the grain yields when compared to the control. The study did not however, forcus at determining plant girth, leaf area angle, node and internode length among other parameters hence further studies on BSFLC application on hybrid maize on these parameters and (also parameters in this study) in different agro-ecological zones should be carried out for more seasons to validate these study findings since the results were for a single season.