African Journal of
Plant Science

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Plant Sci.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1996-0824
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJPS
  • Start Year: 2007
  • Published Articles: 698

Article in Press

The effects of gypsum on pod-yield and pre-harvest aflatoxin contamination in selected peanut cultivars of Zambia

Hendrix Muma Chalwe, Obed Isaac Lungu, Alice Mutiti Mweetwa, Elijah Phiri, Jones Yengwe, Samuel Christopher Njoroge and Rick Brandenburg

  •  Received: 24 March 2019
  •  Accepted: 20 September 2019
Good agricultural practices are an effective means of minimizing pre-harvest aflatoxin contamination in peanuts. A field experiment was conducted to evaluate the effect of gypsum on pod yield and aflatoxin contamination in three peanut cultivars (Kadononga, MGV 4 and MGV 5) in Zambia. The experiment was conducted in Chongwe and Lusaka Districts. Gypsum (15.6 % calcium) was applied at rates of 0 and 400 kg/ha at flowering stage. Although gypsum had no significant effect on aflatoxin contamination, there were significant differences (p = 0.009) in cultivar susceptibility to aflatoxin contamination. The cultivar with the smallest kernels had 18.8 % lower aflatoxin content than the large-kernelled cultivar. Additionally, gypsum did not have a clear effect on pod yield. For instance, gypsum was associated with 44.8 % more grain-filled pods in Kadononga (p = 0.005) at the site in Lusaka, but this result did not apply to the other two cultivars. At the site in Chongwe, gypsum was associated with 34.6 % higher pod yield of MGV 5 only (p = 0.006). These results further suggest that plant factors such as kernel size may have an influence on natural resistance to aflatoxin contamination in peanuts.

Keywords: aflatoxin, gypsum, peanut cultivar, pod-yield, Zambia