African Journal of
Plant Science

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Plant Sci.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1996-0824
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJPS
  • Start Year: 2007
  • Published Articles: 762

Full Length Research Paper

Meta-analysis of the effects of Rhizobia inoculants and phosphorus fertilizer on soybean nodulation in Africa

Jasper Kanomanyanga
  • Jasper Kanomanyanga
  • National Academy of Agriculture Green Development, Department of Plant Nutrition, College of Resource and Environmental Science, China Agricultural University, China.
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Xiaoqiang Jiao
  • Xiaoqiang Jiao
  • National Academy of Agriculture Green Development, Department of Plant Nutrition, College of Resource and Environmental Science, China Agricultural University, China.
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Shingirai Mudare
  • Shingirai Mudare
  • National Academy of Agriculture Green Development, Department of Plant Nutrition, College of Resource and Environmental Science, China Agricultural University, China.
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Stanford Mabasa
  • Stanford Mabasa
  • Department of Plant Production Sciences and Technologies, Faculty of Agriculture, Environment and Food Systems, University of Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe.
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Lixia Tang
  • Lixia Tang
  • Department of Development Studies, College of Humanities and Development Management, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100193, China.
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  •  Received: 03 July 2021
  •  Accepted: 18 August 2021
  •  Published: 31 August 2021

Abstract

Soybean has the potential to bring significant benefits in diversified cropping systems, which could help restructuring soil fertility and allow smallholders to increase grain yield. Rhizobium inoculation improves the biological nitrogen fixation (BNF) in legume crops and assists resource-poor farmers to increase grain yield at lower financial costs. The efficacy of symbiotic bacteria on legumes can also be improved through supplementation of phosphorus fertilizer. In this work, a meta-analysis of 29 peer-reviewed studies was performed to understand the effects of various Rhizobium strains and phosphate fertilizer application on soybean nodules.  Results showed that Rhizobium inoculation was highly effective in increasing the number of soybean nodules, nodule dry weight, and shoot dry weight. Application of phosphorus fertilizer increased the overall nodule number due to improved BNF processes by Rhizobia. The main effects of both Rhizobium inoculation and phosphate fertilizer resulted in moving grain yields to 1.67 t ha-1 and 1.95 t ha-1, respectively. Furthermore, the interaction of Rhizobium inoculants and phosphorus led to relatively higher grain yield (2.51 t ha-1). Therefore, African smallholders were advised to adopt Rhizobium inoculation in soybean fields concomitantly to phosphate fertilizer application, to improve soybean productivity at lower costs.

 

Key words:  Phosphorus application, nodule number, nodule dry weight, shoots dry weight, grain yield.