"Several studies assessed the effect of vermicompost amendments in potting substrates on seedling emergence and growth of a wide range of marketable fruits cultivated in greenhouses (Arancon et al., 2003, 2004a; Atiyeh et al., 2000c,d), as well as on growth, yields (Mba, 1996; Karmegam et al., 1999; Atiyeh et al., 2000a; Arancon et al., 2004b, 2005). Effects of vermicompost applications on fruit quality of fieldgrown tomatoes have rarely been investigated (Premuzic et al., 1998; Zaller, 2006). "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Commercial potting media often contain substantial amounts of peat that was mined from endangered bog and fen ecosystems. The main objectives of this study were to assess (1) whether the amendment of 0, 20, 40, 60, 80 and 100% (vol/vol) of vermicompost (VC) to a fertilized commercial peat potting substrate has effects on the emergence, growth and biomass allocation of tomato seedlings (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.) under greenhouse conditions, (2) whether possible impacts on seedlings can affect tomato yields and fruit quality even when transplanted into equally fertilized field soil, and (3) whether effects are consistent among different tomato varieties. Amended VC was produced in a windrow system of food and cotton waste mainly by earthworms Eisenia fetida Sav. Vermicompost amendments significantly influenced, specifically for each tomato variety, emergence and elongation of seedlings. Biomass allocation (root:shoot ratio) was affected by VC amendments for two varieties in seedling stage and one field-grown tomato variety. Marketable and total yields of field tomatoes were not affected by VC amendments used for seedling husbandry. However, morphological (circumference, dry matter content, peel firmness) and chemical fruit parameters (contents of C, N, P, K, Ca, Mg, L-ascorbic acid, glucose, fructose) were significantly affected by VC amendments in seedling substrates; these effects again were specific for each tomato variety. Overall, vermicompost could be an environmentally friendly substitute for peat in potting media with similar or beneficial effects on seedling performance and fruit quality. However, at least for tomatoes, variety-specific responses should be considered when giving recommendations on the optimum proportion of vermicompost amendment to horticultural potting substrate.
"They amplify membrane permeability, ease the nutrient transport within roots, and favor respiration. Favorable results were obtained by several researchers due to application of vermicompost which include higher seed germination of green gram (Karmegam et al., 1999), tomato (Zaller, 2007), petunia (Arancon et al., 2008) and pine trees (Lazcano et al., 2010), vegetative growth, stimulating shoot and root development (Edwards et al., 2004), elevated plant flowering, number and biomass of the flowers produced (Arancon et al., 2008), as well as increasing fruit yield (Singh et al., 2008). Additionally, vermicompost enhanced the quality of vegetables like tomatoes (Gutiérrez-Miceli et al., 2007), spinach (Peyvast et al., 2008), lettuce (Coria-Cayupán et al., 2009), Chinese cabbage (Wang et al., 2010) and sweet corn (Lazcano et al., 2011). "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Increasing phosphorus (P) availability in tropical P deficient soils is a challenging task. Vermicomposting of organic wastes in the presence of phosphate rock facilitates the release of P and this has the potential to address crop P needs. A study was conducted to assess and compare the effects of application of gafsa phosphate rock (GPR) alone and GPR in combination with empty oil palm fruit bunches, earthworms (Pontoscolex corethrurus), arbuscular mycorrhiza fungi (Glomus mosseae), and P-enriched vermicompost, in fulfilling the P requirements of the setaria (Setaria splendida L.,) grass. Application of mixed organic fertilizer combined with GPR was effective in increasing dry matter yield of grass, with 19% higher dry matter production as compared to the use of GPR alone. Among the organic fertilizers, application of P-enriched vermicompost was the best to support the grass growth. Nitrogen, P, Ca, and Mg uptake of the grass treated with P-enriched vermicompost was higher. Nitrogen and P utilization efficiency of the setaria grass treated with P-enriched vermicompost was also high. Residual P in soil treated with GPR was higher as compared to that treated with P-enriched vermicompost. However, plant available P was higher than that for the other GPR application techniques. The different types of earthworms had no effect on the quantum of nutrient uptake and the dry matter yield of the setaria grass. Application of a mixture of GPR and empty oil palm fruit bunch to the soil increased the dry matter of setaria compared to the use of inorganic fertilizer alone. We conclude that soil treated with P-enriched vermicompost was an efficient treatment for increasing availability of P (24.28 mg kg-1), N, P, Ca and Mg uptake (53.76, 41.83, 13.58 and 15.16 mg pot-1 , respectively); which ultimately enhanced root volume (163 cm 3) and dry matter yield (5.75 to 6.46 g pot-1). Abbreviations: GPR-gafsa phosphate rock;-P-Without application of P fertilizer, soil only; +P-application of gafsa phosphate only; EFB – GPR-application of empty fruit bunch without gafsa phosphate rock; EFB + GPR-application of empty fruit bunch and gafsa phosphate rock; PEV-phosphorus enriched vermicompost; W + AM + EFB – GPR-application of earthworm, empty fruit bunch and inoculating with arbuscular mycorrhizae but without adding gafsa phosphate rock; W + AM + EFB + GPR-application of earthworm, empty fruit bunch, gafsa phosphate rock and inoculation with arbuscular mycorrhizae
"Vermicompost from different sources, such as municipal solid waste , pig manure  and decomposed pods of green gram , promotes plant growth. Vermicompost can also be obtained when cattle manure, together with soil, is used as an earthworm diet. "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Cu, Ni and Zn accumulations in leaves and roots of lettuce (Lactuca sativa L) grown in soil amended with natural and contaminated cattle manure vermicompost were evaluated. The vermicompost residues containing relatively high metal concentrations used in this work were obtained from a previous experiment, in which vermicompost was applied to removing metals from electroplating wastes. Sequential lettuce cultivations were conducted in pots containing the residual substrates from the first cultivation by adding metal-enriched vermicompost residues. In general, the Cu, Ni and Zn concentrations in leaves and roots of lettuce plants grown in vermicompost enriched with these metals were higher than in the treatment using the natural vermicompost. The metal concentrations in leaves from treatments with natural vermicompost were below the critical concentrations of toxicity to plants. However, the metal concentrations in leaves of the third cultivation in which metal-enriched vermicompost was applied were greater than the upper limit that causes plant toxicity, but no visual damage was observed in the plants. Treatment with Zn-enriched vermicompost resulted in toxicity symptoms, but plant damage did not result in the death of the plant. The chemical fractionation of Cu, Ni and Zn in residues from lettuce cultivation was evaluated by using a sequential extraction procedure and metal concentrations were increased in the different chemical fractions according to the increase of vermicompost dose.
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