Table of Contents
ISRN Agronomy
Volume 2012, Article ID 213729, 5 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.5402/2012/213729
Research Article

Residual Nitrogen Contributions from Grain Legumes to the Growth and Development of Succeeding Maize Crop

1Nigerian Medicinal Plants Development Company, Abuja, Nigeria
2Department of Agronomy, Nasarawa State University, P.M.B. 1022, Keffi, Nigeria

Received 8 April 2012; Accepted 26 June 2012

Academic Editors: N. Bellaloui and E. Ober

Copyright © 2012 M. A. Adeleke and I. M. Haruna. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Field experiment was conducted at the Institute for Agricultural Research Farm at Samaru, Nigeria in 2008 and 2009 rainy seasons to investigate the residual nitrogen contributions by four legume crops (soyabean, cowpea, lablab, and groundnut) to the growth and development of succeeding maize given four levels of nitrogen fertilizer (0, 40, 80, and 120 kg N ha−1). In 2008, the treatments consisted of four legumes, maize and a fallow period. The six treatments were laid out using randomized complete block design replicated four times. In 2009, maize crop was planted on the previous crops’ plots and fallow. The experimental design used was split-plot with previous legumes, maize, or fallow as main plots, and the four nitrogen fertilizer treatments as subplots. Results obtained showed that nitrogen availability in the top soils of the previous legumes and fallow compared with that of maize plot was increased by 250, 200, 170, 107 and 157% after lablab, groundnut, cowpea, soyabean and fallow, respectively. Maize grown on previous lablab plot significantly recorded higher growth characters compared with maize following other legumes and fallow. Growth of maize was highest with the application of lower rates of nitrogen after lablab and groundnut compared with maize after maize.