WIT Press


Effect Of Irrigation Amount And Frequency On Phenology, Vine Length And Biomass Partitioning Of Wild Cucumber (Cucumis Myriocarpus) And Wild Watermelon (Cucumis Africanus)

Price

Free (open access)

Paper DOI

10.2495/WRM110491

Volume

145

Pages

7

Page Range

557 - 563

Published

2011

Size

681 kb

Author(s)

R. J. Nkgapele, M. S. Mphosi & P. W. Mashela

Abstract

This study was conducted to determine the most suitable irrigation frequency and quantity for the greenhouse-grown indigenous leafy vegetable, Cucumis myriocarpus, and herbage crop, Cucumis africanus. Four irrigation intervals were tested, 2, 3, 4 and 5 days, arranged in a randomised complete block design. Total irrigation quantities, plant water consumption, rate of progress towards flowering and vine length varied amongst the irrigation frequency treatments, whereas biomass partitioning to botanical fractions differed only in the roots of C. myriocarpus. The highest yields were obtained from treatments employing the middle (3 and 4 days intervals) frequencies and quantities of irrigation. Results of the study suggest that proper management strategies of irrigation amount and frequency can improve the quality and quantity of C. myriocarpus and C. africanus for sustainable rural smallholder crop production system augmentation in the Limpopo Province of South Africa. Keywords: classical growth, biomass yield, root/shoot ratio, water use efficiency, vine length, leaf parameters. 1 Introduction Wild cucumber (Cucumis myriocarpus) and wild watermelon (C. africanus) are important indigenous food and medicinal plants in semi-arid areas of Southern

Keywords

classical growth, biomass yield, root/shoot ratio, water use efficiency, vine length, leaf parameters