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Agriculture for Sustainable Development 1(1):1-5, 2013/Article Kaur and Singh

*Corresponding author email: dograprerna@yahoo.com







EFFECT OF FOLIAR APPLICATION OF N AND Zn ON GROWTH AND YIELD OF
CAULIFLOWER (BRASSICA OLERACEA VAR. BOTRYTIS L.) CV. SNOWBALL

HARISH KUMAR YADAV, PRERNA DOGRA
*
AND VIRENDRA YADAV

Rajasthan College of Agriculture, MPUAT Udaipur (Rajasthan) - 313 001, India

Received: 02.04.2014 Revised accepted: 30. 04.2014
ABSTRACT

An experiment was conducted to find out the efficiency of foliar application of nitrogen and zinc on
growth and yield of cauliflower (Brassica oleracea var. Botrytis L.) cv. Snowball-16 at Horticulture
Farm, Rajasthan College of Agriculture, Udaipur in a clay loam soil having alkaline pH (8.0).
Experiment was laid out in RBD with foliar application of four nitrogen levels (0, 1.0, 1.5 and 2.0%)
and four levels of zinc (0, 20, 30 and 40 ppm). Results show that N (1.5%) level of nitrogen
significantly increased plant height, plant spread, number of unfolded leaves, days taken for curd
initiation, complete maturity of curd, diameter of curd, Fresh weight of plant (curd, shoots and roots)
and yield. Zinc had given significant effect on plant spread, number of unfolded leaves, days taken for
curd initiation, maturity of curd, diameter of curd, fresh weight (curd, shoots and roots) and yield. The
interaction effect of nitrogen and zinc were also found to be significant in yield and fresh weight of
curd. The two foliar sprays on 30 and 45 days after transplanting (DAT) of 1.5% nitrogen and 40 ppm
zinc individually found to be best for yield and growth parameter.

Keywords:
Cauliflower,
Foliar application,
Nitrogen,
Yield and Zinc


INTRODUCTION
Cauliflower (Brassica oleracea botrytis L.) is an
important vegetable crop. It is grown for its white tender
curds formed by the shortened flower parts. Cauliflower
contains good amount of vitamins like riboflavin, thiamine,
nicotinic acid and high quality of proteins and minerals like
calcium and magnesium. The yield of cauliflower is directly
influenced with the manuring and fertilization practices. In
the recent past, much emphasis has been given to the use of
NPK fertilizers but application of micronutrients especially
zinc has been largely neglected. Application of fertilizers,
especially nitrogen is considered as the most important factor
for vegetable production. Zinc deficiency in vegetable crops
is mostly species related. In general its deficiency results in
shortened internodes, chlorate areas in older leaves or may
appear in younger plant also. Plant root absorb zinc as zinc
ions, soluble zinc salts and zinc complexes can also enter the
plant system directly through leaves.
In Rajasthan, the soils of Jaipur, Jodhpur, Ajmer and
Udaipur districts are alkaline in nature and characterized by
high pH ranging between 8.0- 9.0. Present experimental field
was 8.0 and zinc and nitrogen are unavailable to plant due to
high pH. Hence, soil application of these nutrients may not
readily available to the plants. The foliar sprays could be
beneficial to cover up the related deficiencies of these
nutrients. This study is therefore, conducted to see the effect
of foliar spray of nitrogen and zinc on growth and yield of
cauliflower.

MATERIALS AND METHODS
The experiment was conducted during rabi season at
Horticulture Farm, Rajasthan College of Agriculture, Udaipur
in a clay loam soil having alkaline reaction (pH 8.0), available
nitrogen (0.072% ), phosphorus (12.15 kg/ha), potassium (250
kg/ha). Experiment was laid out in RBD with three
replications. The treatments consisted of four levels of N (0,
1.0, 1.5, 2.0% foliar spray) and four levels of zinc (0, 20, 30,
and 40 ppm foliar spray) sprayed after 30 and 45 DAT.
Nitrogen was applied through urea and zinc through ZnSO
4.
Raised nursery beds of 3 1 m size were prepared by mixing
well rotten FYM in the soil @ 10 kg/ha. The seed were
treated with captan @ 2 g/kg seeds for avoiding the infection
of seedling with damping-off and were sown in lines @10 g/
bed on first week of October. The nursery was kept clean by
removing the weeds and was sprayed endosulfan 30 EC @
0.05% to control the attack of any insect pest. Approximately
after 4 weeks, old seedlings were transplanted on the ridges at
a distance of 45 cm apart within the row on the first week of
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Agriculture for Sustainable Development 2(1):56-58, 2014/Article ISSN 2347-5358 (Print)/ 2349-2228 (Online)



Agriculture for Sustainable Development 2(1):56-58, 2014/Article Yadav et al.


November. Immediately after transplanting, irrigation was
done. Two days before transplanting basal dose of phosphorus
and nitrogen were applied through DAP and urea @ 215, 240
kg/ha respectively. of RDN as basal, 1/4
th
of total nitrogen
applied after 20 DAT and remaining 1/4
th
at the time of curd
formation. For application of nitrogen and zinc required
quantity of urea and zinc sulphate was weighed separately
dissolve in little amount of distilled water and volume was
raised upto one liter. The spraying consists of complete
spraying of individual plants with the help of hand sprayer.
The foliar applications of treatment (nitrogen and zinc), were
done on 30 and 45 DAT. Periodical observations of plant
height, plant spread, number of unfolded leaves, days taken
for curd initiation were recorded. The first observation after
30 DAT and subsequent observations at 15 days intervals
recorded.

RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
Effect of nitrogen and zinc levels on growth parameters
Foliar application of nitrogen had significant effect on
height of plants, plant spread (sq cm), number of unfolded
leaves at harvest as compared to control. The nitrogen spray
showed significant effect because of fact that an adequate
supply of nitrogen resulted in vigorous vegetative growth of
plant and imparted deep green colour to the foliage which
favored photosynthesis of carbohydrates in the leaves leading
to formation of amino acids, proteins, chlorophyll, alkaloids
and amides, which in turn favour better development of plant
(Thakur et al., 1991). Foliar application of zinc non-
significantly affect height of plant while the plant spread and
number of unfolded leaves/plant increased significantly at
harvest (Table-1). Increase in growth attributes might be due
to the fact that beside the role of zinc in chlorophyll
formation it also influenced cell division, meristematic
activity of tissue, expansion of cell and formation of cell wall
(Balyan and Joginder, 1994).

Effect of nitrogen and zinc levels on yield
Result indicates foliar application of nitrogen
significantly reduced the time taken for the initiation and
maturity of curd. Minimum time taken for curd initiation
recorded in 1.5% N treatment. However, the difference
between 1.5% N and 2% N concentrations of nitrogen was
found to be non-significant. The reason behind earliness as
result of foliar application of nitrogen might be due to
vigorous vegetative growth of plant which resulted in better
food assimilation by photosynthesis. The food material was
translocated rapidly to the edible portion of plant (curd)
resulting in early development (El-Beheidi and El-mansi,
1973). Zinc treatments also had significant effect on reducing
time for initiation and maturity of curd. Maximum reduction
in time from transplanting to initiation of curd and minimum
days to curd maturity was recorded in 40 ppm Zn treatment
(Table-1). Earliness in curd initiation and maturity might be
due to physiological role of zinc and rapid translocation of
photosynthets towards the curd which might have developed
advance curd (Arora et al., 1990).
Foliar application of different concentration of
nitrogen had significant affected on diameter and fresh
weight of curd as compared to control. The maximum
diameter of curd and fresh weight of curd was recorded in
1.5% N treatment. Increase in curd weight by nitrogen
application might be due to better vegetative growth which
was helpful to accumulate more organic and inorganic
materials by plants resulting in curd maximum weight
(Thakur et al., 1991). Zinc treatment caused significant
increase in curd diameter and fresh weight. Highest
concentration of zinc (40 ppm) observed the maximum curd
diameter and fresh weight of curd compared to lowest in no
Zn treatment (Table-1). Significance of zinc is due to its role
in synthesis of auxin which enhances the growth of plant
resulted in increase fresh weight and diameter of curd (Singh
and Tiwari, 1989).
Foliar application of nitrogen had significantly
increased the fresh weight of shoot and root, yield q/ha
compared to control. Maximum fresh weight of shoot and
root and maximum yield was recorded in 1.5% N followed by
2% N. The increase in fresh weight of shoot and root of
cauliflower plants may be attributed to the association of
nitrogen in the synthesis of protoplasm and primarily in the
manufacture of amino acids and increase auxin activities
brought about by nitrogen fertilization. Zinc had also
significant effect on fresh weight of shoot, root and yield q/ha
(Table-1). Maximum fresh weight of shoot and root ware
obtained in 40 ppm Zn (Forag et al., 1994).

Interaction effect of N and Zn on yield and fresh weight
Interaction effect of N and Zn had significantly
increased the yield and fresh weight. Maximum yield and
fresh weight ware recorded in 1.5% N with 40 ppm Zn
treatment (Table-2). The effect of N and Zn had significantly
increased the fresh weight of curd might be due to synergistic
effect of these two factors (Balyan and Joginder, 1994).

CONCLUSION
The highest yield of cauliflower (Brassica oleracea
var. Botrytis L.) cv. Snowball-16 could be obtained by
double foliar spray of 1.5% nitrogen and 40 ppm zinc
individually. The individual effect of foliar spray of nitrogen
and zinc was found to be significant in increasing plant
height, plant spread, number of leaves/plant, fresh weight
diameter, dry weight, TSS, compactness, colour and yield of
curd q/ha and earliness in complete maturity of curd.
However, interaction effect of N and Zn which is
significantly higher in yield and fresh weight of curd over
other treatments.




Agriculture for Sustainable Development 2(1):56-58, 2014/Article Yadav et al.


Table 1 Effect of foliar spray of nitrogen and zinc on growth and yield of cauliflower

Treatments Plant height (cm)
Plant spread
(Sq. cm)
Unfolded leaves
Days taken for
curd initiation
Days taken for curd
maturity
Diameter of
curd (cm)
Fresh weight (kg)
Yield
(q/ha)
Curd Shoot Root
Nitrogen level (%)
Control 54.39 2932.70 23.19 80.66 108.00 11.34 0.700 1.920 0.098 143.27
1.0 60.21 3115.12 25.20 76.66 101.33 12.33 0.950 2.150 0.120 169.35
1.5 69.91 3341.01 28.25 74.33 100.00 14.04 1.280 2.490 0.150 195.63
2.0 68.12 3325.33 27.20 75.66 101.33 13.23 1.180 2.310 0.133 194.68
CD (P=0.05) 5.849 228.325 2.078 2.113 3.615 0.891 0.027 0.153 0.009 8.124
Zn levels (ppm)
Control 54.39 2932.70 23.19 80.66 108.00 11.34 0.700 1.920 0.098 143.27
20 56.52 3085.48 24.60 77.00 100.00 12.42 0.750 2.090 0.155 158.59
30 58.65 3112.65 25.41 75.66 97.33 13.32 0.810 2.240 0.130 168.86
40 59.89 3218.86 26.17 74.00 95.00 14.13 0.870 2.380 0.139 179.58
CD (P=0.05) NS 228.325 2.078 2.113 3.615 0.891 0.027 0.153 0.009 8.124

Table 2 Interaction effect of foliar spray of nitrogen and zinc on yield and fresh weight of curd
Zinc levels (ppm)
N levels (%)
Combined effect of N and Zn on yield/ha Combined effect of N and Zn on fresh weight of curd
0 1 1.5 2 0 1 1.5 2
0 143.27 169.35 195.63 194.68 0.700 0.950 1.280 1.180
20 158.59 183.47 221.62 204.68 0.750 1.030 1.370 1.230
30 168.86 198.10 243.91 214.91 0.810 1.110 1.527 1.290
40 179.58 211.73 264.13 215.40 0.870 1.190 1.490 1.360
CD (P=0.05) 16.249 0.054


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