Journal of
Soil Science and Environmental Management

  • Abbreviation: J. Soil Sci. Environ. Manage.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-2391
  • DOI: 10.5897/JSSEM
  • Start Year: 2010
  • Published Articles: 272

Article in Press

Soil Fertility and Micronutrient Status in Tissues of Maize in Daro Labu District, West Hararghe Zone, Eastern Ethiopia

Tadele Geremu, Lemma Wogi, Samuel Feyissa

  •  Received: 09 July 2019
  •  Accepted: 04 September 2019
Depletion of soil fertility due to soil erosion and nutrient mining farming system leads to decline soil productivity and subsequently crop yields. This study was initiated to assess soil fertility status and to determine micronutrient concentration in the tissues of maize grown at Daro Labu district, Eastern Ethiopia. Twelve maize growing fields from four kebeles were selected purposively. Field survey was conducted to collect the general information about soil fertility management practices and record spatial data. A total of 12 composite soil samples from the depth of 0-20 cm and 12 maize tissue samples at appropriate stage were collected from selected kebeles during the main cropping season of 2018. Data were analyzed by using SPSS version 20. The soil texture was sandy clay loam with the sand dominating soil separate proportion. Soil bulk density was varied from 1.33 to 1.42 g cm-3 within an acceptable range. The total porosity of soil was very high with a value ranged from 41.49 to 45.27%. The soil pH (6.33 - 6.77) were varied from slightly acidic to neutral level. The soil was very low to low in OC content with values ranged from (0.50 to 0.85%). Following the low OC content, the TN content of soil was low which was varied from 0.04 to 0.22%. The soils were better in their available P content with the values ranged from 10.08 to 16.20 mg kg-1. The CEC of soil was ranged from medium to high. The concentration of exchangeable Ca and Mg were found to be higher and medium respectively while, Low to medium concentration of Na in soil of the study area. Exchangeable K was high to very high. The soil had adequate level of DTPA extractable Fe and Mn whereas deficiency of Cu and B in 100% of soil sample. The soil was showed deficiency of Zn in 25% of soil sample. Maize tissue had sufficient concentration of Fe (57.40 - 86.00 mg kg-1) and Mn (40.30 - 65.67 mg kg-1). However, 41.67%, 41.67% and 75% of maize tissues were deficient which varied from Cu (1.75 - 14.04 mg kg-1), Zn (15.69 - 25.10 mg kg-1) and B (0.36 - 6.68 mg kg-1) concentration respectively. The extractable Fe, Mn, Cu, Zn and B concentration in a plant tissue were positively correlated with their respective soil micronutrients. The physical parameter studied indicate that the soils are at normal condition, while chemical fertility parameters such as OM, total N, Cu, Zn and B are the limiting factors for crop production. The use of integrated soil fertility management practices with increasing organic matter addition should be implemented. Fertilizers containing Cu, Zn and B need to be applied by conducting further experiments under green house and field conditions by considering soil type and crop variety for realizing better production in the study area. The rating of soil and plant nutrient content should be done by considering the local situation.

Keywords: Chemical properties, Micronutrients, Maize, physical properties, Soil fertility