Table of Contents
ISRN Soil Science
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 984783, 6 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.5402/2012/984783
Research Article

Physicochemical Changes during Vermicomposting of Water Hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes) and Grass Clippings

Department of Biology, University of Guyana, Georgetown 05924, Guyana

Received 17 December 2011; Accepted 9 January 2012

Academic Editors: T. J. Cutright and Z. He

Copyright © 2012 Abdullah Adil Ansari and Jerome Rajpersaud. 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

The present study was aimed at large scale processing of organic waste (grass-T1, water hyacinth-T2, water hyacinth + grass-T3) in three different combinations through biodung and vermicomposting. The results indicated that the pre-digestion of organic waste through anaerobic and aerobic decomposition was most effective in T3. The temperature of the biodung units rose to a maximum of 3 7 . 5 ± 1 . 5 °C and then declined gradually to a constant temperature of 3 5 . 2 5 ± 1 . 7 5 °C, bringing about reduction of organic waste free from harmful microbes. The temperature during the process of vermicomposting was observed to be 2 8 . 2 6 ± 2 . 1 9 °C in T1 followed by 2 7 . 3 1 ± 0 . 8 0 °C in T2 and 2 6 . 9 4 ± 0 . 6 8 °C in T3. The pH in three units was near neutral ( 6 . 8 1 ± 0 . 1 8 ). C : N ratio was reduced to the required level ( 1 2 . 4 1 ± 3 . 7 1 ). Vermicomposting in T3 resulted in high productivity of vermicompost followed by T2 and T1 which was due to preferential palatability of earthworms Eisenia foetida towards mixed composting material in T3. The results indicated that the vermicompost is highly rich in nutrient and the percentages of these nutrients in the compost vary as the process proceeded until their ideal concentrations for the promotion of plant growth reached.